Gliding in Furness

Photograph from Barrow News September 1934
Copyright: Cumbria Archive and Local Studies Centre, Barrow-in-Furness

The Furness Gliding Club

The club was formed in Barrow in October 1930 and rapidly attained a very prominent position amongst clubs in Britain. It was affiliated to the British Gliding Association. Demonstrations of sailplaning by Herr Magersuppe were held at Kirkby Ireleth in October 1930 and again at Ireleth in October 1931. The 3rd Annual Competition of the British Gliding Association was held between 27 August and 4 September 1932 at Ireleth.

Planes came from as far as Belfast and Maidstone to take part in the competition held at Ireleth. The planes were made of stout canvas, three plywood and spruce. Though delicate they were strong….The weather was not perfect for the flights. No flights took place on the Monday due to the wind but on Wednesday Mr
Buxton reached 1700 feet.

Barrow News September 1932

During the competition several British gliding records were established:

  • First sailplane flight by a British pilot where an altitude of over 1000ft was recorded (1700 feet by M Buxton in a British Falcon machine
  • Record duration for 2 seater sailplane with a passenger of 2 hours 33 minutes
  • Record altitude for 2 seater sailplane with passenger of 1500 feet
  • Solo flight of 2 ½ hours in a British built machine with a recorded height of 1450 feet
  • Unofficial record cross country flight of 13 ½ miles in a straight line Askam to Monk Coniston (actual distance approximately 40 miles)

The club’s training site was at Moorside, Ireleth

Taken from Furness Year Book 1932

This article is based on an exhibition created by Cumbria Archive and Local Studies Centre, Barrow-in-Furness.

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