Royal Aero Club - Blog

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Amy Johnson, CBE (1903-1941)
Today marks the 75th anniversary of the death, in tragic circumstances, of Amy Johnson, at the early age of 37. Amy Johnson was a pioneering English aviatrix and was the first female pilot to fly alone from Britain to Australia (Sydney motorcade, below left). Flying solo or with her husband, Jim Mollison, she set numerous long-distance records during the 1930’s. Amy flew in the Second World War as a part of the Air Transport Auxiliary. She died during the rescue operation that followed a ferry flight from which she had bailed out over the Thames estuary. By coincidence, the news of today’s anniversary was followed by two related news stories. On 6 January 2016, a Yorkshire historian rather sensationalised Amy’s life and death, in the publicity for his new eBook. More positively, on 7 January 2016, Tracey Curtis-Taylor (below right) completed her epic flight from the UK to Australia in her vintage, open-cockpit biplane “The Spirit of Artemis”, retracing Amy Johnson’s 1930 flight.