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Newsletter 28
Autumn 2010
Updated on 30Oct2010
Published by the Hawker Association
for the Members.
Contents Hawker Association

Contents
Editorial
Book Reviews
DH Heritage Centre
Experimental Department
Hawker Formations
Hunter News
Members
New Technologies
Programme For 2010
PWS 'George' Bulman
Sea Harrier News
Sir Sydney And I
Sopwith News
Two-Seat Fury
Wartime Memories
 

    The Brooklands Museum has recently been given a collection of Bulman papers and photographs. He was, of course, chief test pilot of Hawkers between the wars but less well known is his preceding career as an experimental test pilot with the RAE at Farnborough. Amongst the papers was the following original manuscript letter from the CO of the Experimental Flight, Squadron Leader RM Hill (later Air Chief Marshal Sir Roderick), for whom Bulman flew.

Recommendation for award of Bar to AFC.
FO Bulman MC AFC(Flying A) PC
Director of Research

    I recommend the above mentioned officer for the award of a bar to the AFC; generally for exceptional services at all times as an experimental pilot; especially on the following grounds.
PWS 'George' Bulman

toptop
1. At the request of the Accidents Department an experiment was in progress to investigate the flying qualities of the Sopwith Camel, with reference to the considerable number of accidents attending its use as a training aeroplane. F/O Bulman, further to his normal spinning experiments, abandoned all controls in a spin and only attempted to recover when the aeroplane was in an over-the-vertical dive. H e volunteered to undertake inverted flying experiments to attempt to throw some light on the Camel's abnormal behaviour inverted. Besides taking measurements of airspeed when in inverted flight, he deliberately used his controls to stall the aeroplane when inverted and also to attempt to produce an inverted spin.

2. On a similar request from the Accidents Department, F/O Bulman investigated the recovery from spins on the Bat Bantam aeroplane. It was anticipated that it would be difficult to recover from a right hand spin with the propeller stopped. This officer commenced his experiments at 4000 ft, allowed the propeller to stop in a spin, and had great difficulty in recovering. He found that the use of engine assisted recovery. He continued his experiments at 10000ft and carried out between 25 and 30 spins in one flight, (and) in all cases of right hand spins, engine-stopped, experiencing difficulty in recovering, and in one or two cases becoming so giddy that he was unable to recollect his control movements. He immediately volunteered to repeat the experiments and attempt to measure the time of recovery with a stop watch, the airspeed, and height drop. On one occasion, after employing every known method of using the controls, it took him 3000 ft to make a recovery; in spite of this he was just able to record the time and height drop.

        I consider that his pluck and keenness, combined with a determination to make a scientific record of his experience, deserves the highest praise.
                    RM Hill
                        Squadron Leader