Alliott Verdon Roe

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name = Alliott Verdon Roe



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caption = Alliott Verdon Roe
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birth_date = April 26, 1877
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death_date = January 4 1958
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nationality = England
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occupation = aircraft manufacturer
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Sir Edwin Alliott Verdon Roe (April 26, 1877January 4 1958) was a pioneer British pilot and aircraft manufacturer, and founder in 1910 of the Avro company. He was the first Englishman to make a powered flight (in 1908 at Brooklands) and the first Englishman to fly an all British machine a year later, on Hackney Marshes. Roe was born in Patricroft, Eccles, now in the City of Salford. The son of a doctor, he left home when he was 14 to go to Canada where he had been offered training as a surveyor. When he arrived in British Columbia he discovered that a silver slump meant there was little demand for surveyors and he spent a year working odd jobs.

Once he returned to Britain he served as an apprentice with the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway and later tried to join the Royal Navy and study marine engineering at King's College London but, although he passed the technical and mathematics papers, was rejected for failing some of the general subjects. As well as dockyard work, the young Roe joined the ship S.S. "Jebba" of the British & South African Royal Mail Company as fifth engineer on the West African run.He went on to serve on other vessels, finishing his Merchant Navy career as third engineer aboard S.S."Ichanga" . It was during this time that he first turned his mind to the possibility of actually building a flying machine.

Gradually he developed his interest in birds and in flight, and began to construct flying models, winning a "Daily Mail" competition with a prize of £75 for one of his designs in 1907, against fierce competition. With the prize money he was soon to build a full size aeroplane based on his winning model, the Roe I Biplane, which he flew in 1908.

When the Wright brothers made the very first flight in a heavier than air machine at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, he was almost immediately in correspondence with them. He cycled to Le Mans to meet them when they made their first, very impressive, European flights. He applied for and took a job with the Royal Aero Club. He then found a job in the U.S.A. with a firm trying to build a gyrocopter. The machine was a failure and Roe came back to Britain; but not discouraged.

Walthamstow marsh was the location of Roe's later attempts to build and fly his early aeroplanes. Despite many failures, Roe continued his experiments and there is now a blue plaque commemorating his first successful flight (in July 1909) on one of the railway arches he worked from.

With his brother Humphrey, he founded the A.V. Roe Aircraft Co. in 1910. His most popular model, the 504, sold more than 8,300, mainly to the Royal Air Force for use by training units. In 1928, he sold his shares and bought S. E. Saunders Co., and formed Saunders-Roe Aviation.

He was knighted in 1929. During the 1930s he was a supporter of Oswald Mosley. He was a great believer in monetary reform and thought it was wrong that banks should be able to create money by "book entry" and charge interest on it when they lent it out. In this respect he shared the same enthusiasm for reform as the American poet Ezra Pound, who also wrote for the Mosley press.

References

* Avro - The History of an Aircraft Company, Harry Holmes, Crowood, Marlborough, 2004, ISBN 1-86126-651-0
* Avro Aircraft since 1908, A.J.Jackson, Putnam, London, 1990, ISBN 0-85177-834-8
*The Challenging Sky - The Life of Sir Alliott Verdon-Roe, L.J. Ludovici, Herbert Jenkins, London, 1956

External links

* [http://www.ctie.monash.edu.au/hargrave/roe.html Biography]
* [http://www.oswaldmosley.com/people/avroe.html Biography at Oswald Mosely website]
* [http://www.verdon-roe.co.uk Verdon-Roe family website]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Alliott Verdon Roe — (1877 1958) est un industriel britannique et un grand pionnier de l’aéronautique. Auteur (non reconnu) du premier vol effectué par un britannique sur un avion de sa conception, il créa les firmes A.V.Roe and Company et Saunders Roe Ltd. Sommaire… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Alliott Verdon-Roe — (1877 1958) est un industriel britannique et un grand pionnier de l’aéronautique. Auteur (non reconnu) du premier vol effectué par un britannique sur un avion de sa conception, il créa les firmes A.V.Roe and Company et Saunders Roe Ltd. Sommaire… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Alliott Verdon Roe — Sir Edwin Alliott Verdon Roe (* 26. April 1877 in Patricroft; † 4. Januar 1958 in London) war ein britischer Luftfahrtpionier und Gründer des Luftfahrtunternehmens Avro. Leben Edwin Alliott Roe wurde als viertes Kind des Arztes Dr. Edwin Hodson… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Roe, Sir Alliott Verdon — ▪ British aircraft designer in full  Sir Edwin Alliott Verdon Roe   born April 26, 1877, Patricroft, Lancashire, Eng. died Jan. 4, 1958, London       the first Englishman to construct and fly his own airplane.       Roe quit school at age 14 and… …   Universalium

  • Roe, Sir Edwin Alliott Verdon — SUBJECT AREA: Aerospace [br] b. 26 April 1877 Manchester, England d. 4 January 1958 London, England [br] English designer of one of the most successful biplanes of all time, the Avro 504. [br] A.V.Roe served an apprenticeship at a railway works,… …   Biographical history of technology

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  • Roe Triplan n° 4 — Roe IV Triplane Vue de l avion Constructeur …   Wikipédia en Français

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