|Born||27 January 1895|
|Died|| 20 June 1968 73) (aged|
Alderney, Channel Islands
|Service/|| British Army|
Royal Air Force
|Years of service||1917–1927|
|Unit|| No. 64 Squadron RFC |
No. 43 Squadron RAF
|Battles/wars|| World War I|
• Western Front
|Awards||Distinguished Flying Cross|
|Other work||Test pilot|
Thomas Rose DFC (27 January 1895 – 20 June 1968) was a British flying ace in World War I, credited with 11 victories. Better known as "Tommy" Rose, he also won the King's Cup Air Race in 1935 and from 1939–45 was Chief Test Pilot with Phillips & Powis Aircraft Ltd. – renamed Miles Aircraft Ltd. in 1943.
The Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) is the third-level military decoration awarded to officers, and since 1993 to other ranks, of the United Kingdom's Royal Air Force and other services, and formerly to officers of other Commonwealth countries, for "an act or acts of valour, courage or devotion to duty whilst flying in active operations against the enemy".
A flying ace, fighter ace or air ace is a military aviator credited with shooting down several enemy aircraft during aerial combat. The actual number of aerial victories required to officially qualify as an ace has varied, but is usually considered to be five or more.
World War I, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history. It is also one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide.
Rose joined the Royal Flying Corps in 1917 and was posted to No. 64 Squadron later that year, flying DH.9s. The squadron was involved in the Battle of Cambrai in a ground-strafing role. It subsequently re-equipped with SE5as, which led to greater involvement in aerial combat. He was awarded the DFC in November 1918, having become a deputy flight commander.
The Royal Flying Corps (RFC) was the air arm of the British Army before and during the First World War, until it merged with the Royal Naval Air Service on 1 April 1918 to form the Royal Air Force. During the early part of the war, the RFC supported the British Army by artillery co-operation and photographic reconnaissance. This work gradually led RFC pilots into aerial battles with German pilots and later in the war included the strafing of enemy infantry and emplacements, the bombing of German military airfields and later the strategic bombing of German industrial and transport facilities.
No. 64 Squadron was a squadron of the Royal Air Force. It was first formed on 1 August 1916 as a squadron of the Royal Flying Corps. It was disbanded on 31 January 1991 at RAF Leuchars.
The Airco DH.9 – also known after 1920 as the de Havilland DH.9 – was a British single-engined biplane bomber developed and deployed during the First World War.
Following the end of the war, Rose became a flight commander with No. 43 Squadron, RAF, serving from 1925–1927.
No. 43 Squadron was a Royal Air Force aircraft squadron originally formed in 1916 as part of the Royal Flying Corps. It saw distinguished service during two world wars, producing numerous "aces". The squadron last operated the Panavia Tornado F3 from RAF Leuchars, Scotland, in the air defence role, until it was disbanded in July 2009.
After leaving the RAF with the rank of flight lieutenant, Rose worked in aviation first taking a job at Brooklands in charge of Britain's first petrol station for aeroplanes which was opened there by the Anglo-American Oil Company in April 1927. In 1930 he gave several public aerobatic displays at Brooklands. He enjoyed notable success in air racing when he won the prestigious Kings Cup Air Race in 1935, flying the prototype Miles M.3 Falcon G-ADLC. The following year, in the same aircraft Rose gained the U.K to Cape Town passage record, at 3 days 17 hours and 38 minutes.
Brooklands was a 2.75-mile (4.43 km) motor racing circuit and aerodrome built near Weybridge in Surrey, England, United Kingdom. It opened in 1907 and was the world's first purpose-built motor racing circuit as well as one of Britain's first airfields, which also became Britain's largest aircraft manufacturing centre by 1918, producing military aircraft such as the Wellington and civil airliners like the Viscount and VC-10.
Initially joining Phillips & Powis Aircraft Ltd (later Miles Aircraft Ltd) as sales pilot and flying instructor at Woodley Aerodrome near Reading, Berkshire, he became the company's Chief Test Pilot after the unexpected death of Bill Skinner in 1939 and remained in that position throughout World War II. He made the first flights of the Miles M.20/2 fighter (on 15 September 1940), Miles 'X' Minor (February 1942); Miles M.25 Martinet (24 April 1942), Miles M.33 Monitor (5 April 1944) and Miles M.57 Aerovan (26 January 1945).
Reading is a large minster town in Berkshire, England, of which it is now the county town. It is in the Thames Valley at the confluence of the River Thames and River Kennet, and on both the Great Western Main Line railway and the M4 motorway. Reading is 70 miles (110 km) east of Bristol, 24 miles (39 km) south of Oxford, 40 miles (64 km) west of London, 14 miles (23 km) north of Basingstoke, 12 miles (19 km) south-west of Maidenhead and 15 miles (24 km) east of Newbury as the crow flies.
The Miles M.20 was a Second World War fighter developed by Miles Aircraft in 1940. It was designed as a simple and quick-to-build 'emergency fighter' alternative to the Royal Air Force's Spitfires and Hurricanes should their production become disrupted by bombing expected in the anticipated German invasion of England. Due to dispersal of manufacturing, the Luftwaffe's bombing of the Spitfire and Hurricane factories did not seriously affect production, the M.20 proved unnecessary and the design was not pursued.
Thomas Rose lived (for a time in retirement) in a house on Alderney, Channel Islands. The house, in Les Venelles, carries a blue plaque on the wall.
A blue plaque is a permanent sign installed in a public place in the United Kingdom and elsewhere to commemorate a link between that location and a famous person, event, or former building on the site, serving as a historical marker. The term is used in the United Kingdom in two different senses. It may be used narrowly and specifically to refer to the "official" scheme administered by English Heritage, and currently restricted to sites within Greater London; or it may be used less formally to encompass a number of similar schemes administered by organisations throughout the UK.
RAF Tangmere which was in Tangmere, 3 miles (5 km) east of Chichester, West Sussex, England, was a Royal Air Force station famous for its role in the Battle of Britain. Famous Second World War aces wing commander Douglas Bader, and the then inexperienced Johnnie Johnson were at Tangmere in 1941.
Wing Commander Lance Cleo "Wildcat" Wade DSO, DFC & Two Bars was an American pilot who joined the Royal Air Force (RAF) during World War II and became a flying ace. He remained with RAF until his death in a flying accident in 1944 in Italy. He was described as a "distinguished American fighter ace who epitomized perhaps more than any other American airman the wartime accords between Britain and the United States."
No. 46 Squadron of the Royal Flying Corps and the Royal Air Force, formed in 1916, was disbanded and re-formed three times before its last disbandment in 1975. It served in both World War I and World War II.
Hucknall Aerodrome is located 5 NM north northwest of Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England and west of Hucknall town. The aerodrome had been operated by the Merlin Flying Club since 1971, it is owned by Rolls-Royce Group PLC following previous ownership by both the Air Ministry and Ministry of Aviation. Hucknall Aerodrome had a CAA Ordinary Licence that allowed daytime flights for the public transport of passengers or for flying instruction as authorised by the licensee and was not available for public transport passenger flights required to use a licensed aerodrome. It was a C.1916 grass aerodrome of significant historical importance. On 1 March 2015 the aerodrome closed indefinitely to be turned into a housing and industrial estate.
Neville Frederick Duke, was a British test pilot and fighter ace of the Second World War. He was the most successful Western Allied ace in the Mediterranean Theatre, and was credited with the destruction of 27 enemy aircraft. After the war, Duke was acknowledged as one of the world's foremost test pilots. In 1953, he became holder of the world air speed record when he flew a Hawker Hunter at 727.63 mph (1,171.01 km/h) over Littlehampton.
Air Vice Marshal Meredith Thomas, was a senior commander in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. He began his career as a flying ace during the First World War, credited with five aerial victories.
No 501 Squadron was the fourteenth of the twenty-one flying units in the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, the volunteer reserve part of the British Royal Air Force. The squadron won seven battle honours, flying Hurricane, Spitfire and Tempest fighter aircraft during World War II, and was one of the most heavily engaged units in RAF Fighter Command. In particular, the Squadron saw extensive action during the Battle of France and Battle of Britain. At present the unit is not flying any more and has a logistics role as part of No 85 Expeditionary Logistics Wing.
Eric Stanley Lock, was a British Royal Air Force (RAF) fighter pilot and flying ace of the Second World War.
Group Captain Desmond James Scott, was a New Zealand fighter pilot and flying ace of the Second World War. He gained his licence as a private pilot in 1939 and was automatically enlisted in the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) in September of that year. Arriving in Britain in September 1940, Scott was attached to the Royal Air Force and flew in operations over Europe, rising through the ranks to become the RNZAF's youngest group captain of the war.
Group Captain Billy Drake, was a British fighter pilot and air ace. He was credited officially with 18 enemy aircraft destroyed, two shared, two unconfirmed, four probables, two shared probables and five damaged and one shared damaged with the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. Further revisions to these statistics increased this total to 20 destroyed and seven damaged with a further 13 destroyed and four damaged on the ground.
William "Cherry" Vale, was a Royal Air Force (RAF) fighter pilot and flying ace of the Second World War. He was credited with 30 enemy aircraft shot down, shared in the destruction of three others, and claimed 6 damaged and another two shared damaged. His 20 kills achieved while flying the Hawker Hurricane and his 10 with the Gloster Gladiator made him the second highest scoring Hurricane and biplane pilot in the RAF, in both cases after Marmaduke Pattle.
No. 87 Squadron RAF was an aircraft squadron of the Royal Air Force during the First World War and Second World War.
No. 601 Squadron is a squadron of the RAF Reserves, based in London. The squadron battle honours most notably include the Battle of Britain, and the first Americans to fly in the Second World War were members of this squadron. Reactivated in 2017, it is a specialist squadron "tapping into the talents of leaders from industry, academia and research to advise and shape and inspire [the RAF]".
Flying Officer Leslie Hamilton, was a British First World War flying ace credited with six aerial victories. He disappeared while attempting the first non-stop east-west flight across the Atlantic Ocean. His Fokker F.VIIa, named St. Raphael, was last seen over the mid-Atlantic by oil tanker SS Josiah Macy.
Captain Ian Donald Roy McDonald was a British World War I flying ace credited with 20 aerial victories. Although born in the British West Indies, he returned to England to serve in the air force. After his successful career in combat, he spent a short while at home before returning to the colours. He served in Iraq postwar, and was executed there by insurgents.
Richard John "Dickie" Cork, was a fighter ace in the Fleet Air Arm of the Royal Navy during the Second World War. Cork served in the Battle of Britain as the wingman for Douglas Bader of No. 242 Squadron RAF. When he returned to the Fleet Air Arm in 1941, Cork served with 880 Naval Air Squadron in the Arctic, Mediterranean and Indian Ocean. It was during Operation Pedestal in 1942 that he became the only Royal Navy pilot to shoot down five aircraft in one day, and was the leading naval ace using the Hawker Hurricane. He was given command of the 15th Naval Fighter Wing aboard HMS Victorious before being killed in a flying accident over Ceylon in 1944.
Flight Lieutenant Joseph Michael John Moore was a British World War I flying ace credited with eight aerial victories. He flew as a gunner/observer in two-seater fighters, garnering his wins while flying with three different pilots. He would return to military service for World War II.
Anthony Desmond Joseph "Tony" Lovell, was a fighter pilot and flying ace of the Royal Air Force during the Second World War. He served in the Battle of Britain, on Malta, and over France, but was killed in a flying accident shortly after the war in Europe had ended.
Peter William Olber "Boy" Mould, was a Royal Air Force fighter pilot and flying ace of the Second World War.