THE ROYAL AIR FORCE FLYING-BOAT CRUISE

Log of the Far East Flight from Karachi to Singapore

Wednesday December 14th

Karachi

Aircraft of the Flight were inspected by Air Vice-Marshal Sir W. Geoffrey H. Salmond (A.O.C., R.A.F.,India). All officers and airmen slept in the flying-boats, which were ready in all respects (500 galls, fuel) for the continuation of the cruise.

Thursday, December 15.

Karachi—Bombay. 475 miles. (7 hrs. 0 mins. ; 68 knots.)

A.O.C. India embarked in S. 1152 at 07.15. Flight " took-off " and left in formation for Bombay at 07.30 in fine weather with a S.E. wind of 2 m.p.h., and hull and strut temperatures of 70° F. Flight circled over Diu (Portuguese India) at 12.00, the Fort firing a salute, and landed in formation at Bombay at 14.30, securing to buoys off the Yacht Club. The weather conditions throughout the flight were good. Many very large fish could be seen during the flight off the Kathiawar Coast.

Friday December 16th to Monday December 26th

Bombay

Arrangements were made with the Royal Indian Marine for the loan of skiffs for communication between flying-boats and the shore, and for a guard to keep the harbour traffic clear of the flying-boats. On December 17, the Flight formed an aerial escort for the departure from Bombay of His Excellency, the Amir of Afghanistan. On December 19, His Excellency the Governor and his A.D.C. went for a flight over Bombay in S. 1152. The Flight refuelled to 400 gallons each on December 19, taxiing and securing to the stern of the fuel lighter, which was anchored close to the aircraft moorings. On the night of the 26th, all officers and airmen slept in the flying-boats in readiness for the flight on the following morning.

Tuesday December 27th

Bombay—Mangalore. 295 miles. (5 hrs. 45 mins.; 68 knots.)

The Flight slipped at 07.20, took off in formation at 07.30 in a N.E. wind of 5 m.p.h., and left for Mangalore. At the request of the Director, Royal Indian Marine, the Flight opened out and searched near Janjira for any signs of the wreck of the " Jayanti," a small coasting steamerof the Bombay Steam Navigation Co., which had been sunk in this area, with all hands, by a cyclone on November 12, and which could not be located. The water was muddy, and nothing was seen of the wreck : this was reported to the Director, Royal Indian Marine and the Bombay Steam Navigation Co.,who replied, thanking the Flight for the trouble taken.

The Flight reached Mangalore without incident and landedithere at 13.15, securing to buoys laid off the Customs House. The Southamptons were the first aircraft to be seen here, and large numbers of visitors, both European and Native, bad come in from the surrounding districts to see the Flight arrive.

The whole shore and the quay were packed with natives, who remained watching the flying-boats until long after dark, and were there again by daylight the following morning.

Wednesday December 28th

At Mangalore

Many residents, both European and Indian, visited the flying-boats during the day. It was a fine, clear day, and the noon conditions were, wind, W., 5 m.p.h.; temperatures, strut, 81° F., hull, 82" F.; sky, clear. The crowds on shore remained watching the boats all day.


Thursday, December 29.

Mangalore—Cochin. 195 miles. (3 hrs.I5 mins. ; 60 knots.)

At 11.00, the Flight took off in succession, each boat remaining at its buoy until the boat before it was in the air ; this was necessary, owing to the smallness of the area with a sufficient depth of water.

The water-front was crowded ; the whole population of the district appeared to have come down to see the Flight leave, and they shouted and cheered as each boat took off. After picking up formation and circling Mangalore, the Flight set course down the coast, circling Calicut at 13.00, and landing in formation at Cochin at 14.15. As the Flight were the first aircraft to visit this coast, the Port Officer, Mangalore, had informed the authorities of the towns on the route of the approximate times the Flight would pass over, and the beaches near the towns and villages were crowded. The coast was very picturesque, with many rivers, lagoons and backwaters, which appeared from the air to be very suitable for emergency landings if the depth of water is adequate. On arrival at Cochin, the Flight secured to buoys in the harbour about one-quarter mile N.E. of the town.

Friday December 30th

Cochin

The Flight, being the first aircraft to be seen at Cochin, aroused the greatest interest; crowded boats of all descriptions were continually passing round the area reserved for the flying-boats, and crowds watched the aircraft all day from the shores of the harbour ; even the water-front of Ernakulam, the native capital of Cochin, which is 1J miles from the flying-boat moorings, was crowded with people, although they had been told that the Flight would not leave until 0900 on the following day. The weather conditions at noon were : Wind variable and under 5 m.p.h.; sky, 0 2 clouded ; temperature, 80" F. strut; 83° F. hull.


Saturday December 31st

Cochin to Colombo. 315 miles. (4 hrs. 30 mins. ; 39 knots.)

The weather was fine and clear with light detached clouds to the S.E. and a N.E. wind of 5 m p.h. The hull and strut temperatures were 78° F". The Flight slipped together and took off in formation at 09.00 in 35 secs. After circling Cochin and Ernakulam the Flight left for Colombo, circling in close formation over Alleppi, Quilon and Trivandrum and dropping a message of greeting to the residents of Quilon in accordance with requests which had been received. Throughout this part of the route

the Flight appeared to arouse great interest ; the beaches and open spaces near the towns and villages being crowded.

As Cap Cormorin was approached, the weather became overcast and the wind increased to about 20 knots from the N.E., raising a nasty sea in the Gulf of Manaar, which moderated near Colombo. The Flight landed in succession in Colombo Harbour at 13.30 near the S.W. arm of the breakwater, and secured to four buoys which had been specially laid near the northern end.


1928

Sunday January 1st to Wednesday January 11th

Colombo

Many visitors were shown over the flying-boats, including the Master Attendant, the Senior Naval Officer, the Chairman of the Special Commission on Ceylon Reforms, Sir Geoffrey Butler, the Inspector General of Police and many naval and harbour officers.

During the stay at Colombo there were several heavy rain and thunderstorms, mostly in the evening and at night. The average hull temperature at noon was 82° F.

The eight airmen of the flying crews were sent to the Naval Rest Camp at Diyatalawa in two parties, the first from January 3 to 6, and the second from January 7 to 10. This complete change was of great value to the Flight.

Thursday, January 12

Colombo to Trincomali. 290 miles. 4 hrs. 45 mins.; 60 knots.)

The duty officer and all airmen slept on board. Remaining officers on board by 07.00. The weather conditions were dull. wind, N.E., 10 m.p.h.; sky, half-clouded at 1,000 ft. to 1,500 ft. ; hull and stut temperatures, 77° F. A considerable crowd collected on the S.W. Arm of the breakwater to see the Flight leave.

The Flight took off in succession at 08.00, the times varying from 45 to 55 secs., being much the worst experienced so far during the cruise, more especially as the fuel load was only 400 gallons in each machine. The long take-off was due primarily to the thick deposits which had formed on the hull bottoms during the stay of 12 days at Colombo. An examination of the hull bottoms during the flight from Cochin to Colombo had shown them to be practically free from growths. The swell in the harbour may have lengthened the get-off a little, but it was not serious and the poor acceleration was noticeable directly the engines were opened out. Whilst S. 1150 was taking off, a seagull flew into the starboard airscrew, and its dead body remained jambed at the base of the " V " struts under the engines until the aircraft landed at Trincomali; the metal airscrew was undamaged.

After circling Colombo in formation the Flight left for Trineomali, S. 1149 and S. 1150 flying round the south of the Island, S. 1151 and S. 1152 round the north. The former found the clouds very low near Galle, and came down to 20 ft., flying along the edge of the beach for about 10 mins. The clouds then lifted and the aircraft climbed to 500 ft. off Dondra Head, and shortly afterwards a torrential rainstorm was passed through. S. 1150 steered out to sea for a mile or two, and thus avoided the centre of what apparently was a small cyclonic storm, but S. 1149 in the centre of the storm had a most anxious five minutes. The rain, descending in torrents, almost blinded the pilot, who could not see the water above 20 ft. The whole surface of the sea was covered with swirling foam, and the heavy bumps made the aircraft almost uncontrollable.

The engines dropped revolutions and ran unevenly and the pilot had the greatest difficulty to avoid being forced on to the water, which was too rough for a safe " landing " and " take off." After about 5 minutes the conditions improved, the aircraft regained touch and no further difficulty was experienced though several heavy rain storms were seen, and avoided. When passing the game reservation on the south coast, a number of elephants, buffalo, boar sambar. deer and monkeys were seen. S. 1149 and S. 1150 landed at Trincomali at 12.45. A number of large lagoons, which appeared from the air to be suitable for seaplanes, were seen on the south and south-east coasts of Ceylon.

S.1151 and S.1152, flying north-about, experienced north-east winds up to 20 m.p.h. and occasional light rain on the west coast ; they passed over Punerin and followed the water ways across the north of Ceylon and thence down the east coast with an easterly wind of about 20 m.p.h. and a rough sea. the aircraft landed at Trincomali at 12.35 in an interval between the showers.

Friday January 13th to Wednesday January 18th

Trincomali

The Weather was generally fine but there were several short periods of heavy rain. The hull temperature during the day averaged 80' F. and the wind was generally north-east up to 15 m.p.h. All the flying-boats were taxied in turn to the shallow water (4 to 5 ft.) in front of the naval sick quarters, where there was a smooth sandy bottom, and were secured to the pier there and the shore so that they were just afloat. The officers and airmen of the flight, assisted by three seamen and six coolies, removed the weed and barnacles from the bottoms with hand scrubbing brushes and pieces of wood. The barnacles were firmly fixed to the paint, which generally came away with them, and ,as most of the cleaning had to be done with the head under water it was most exhausting. A rope passed under the boat and worked backward and forwards above the water line was found very useful for clearing the area near the keel. The time taken to taxy in the boat, secure it, clean the bottom, flight test and secure to the moorings, was about 2and half hours per boat and the work on the four boats was spread over two days. As far as could be judged by inspection under water and by flying low over observers, practically the whole of the deposits on the bottoms had been removed. The flight test showed that the average time for take-off with the clean bottoms was 30 sec , compared with the 50 secs, required with the dirty bottoms with approximately the same load and weather conditions. This result was confirmed by " get-off " tests of S.I 150 immediately before and after cleaning.

As a result of the hard work under water, a number of the officers and airmen suffered from ear-ache. This was cured by syringing out the ears.

Thursday January 19th

Trincomali to Pulicat, (5hrs 32 mins : 60 kts.).

Airmen slept on board ; all officers on board at 06.00. The morning was fine with a N.E. wind of 5 m.p.h. Sky : 0.3 Clouded; hulland strut temperatures : 77 F. ; barometer : 29.00.

Flight took off in formation at 06.50 in 40 sees. In accordance with request which had been received from local authorities, the Flight followed the cost dipped at Muletivu (07.45) and circled in formation over Point Petro (08.30) Madras was reached at 12.00, and after circling the town twice in Formation a message for His Excellency the Governor was dropped. The flight landed at Pulicat Lake at 12.20, in an area of adequate depth Marked by flags near the south end of the lake, and secured to the four buoys which had been laid for it. Throughout the flight the wind was approximately N.E. 12 Knots rather more in the Palk Straits and rather less and more easterly farther north. South of Madras the open sea was too rough for “take-off” in the open to be safe. The flying conditions generally were good with short Periods of heavy bumps over the land. The only trouble experienced during the flight was a water leak in the starboard engine of S.1152 due to the failure of the small washer on the rear water connection to the starboard Cylinder head. The throttle of the starboard engine was then closed until the flight reached its refuelling base at Pulicat at 12.20. The aircraft lost about 400 ft. durring the 20 mins. flight on one engine. On landing, the defect was made good and examination of the engine showed it to be undamaged.

Friday January 20th

Pulicat to Coconada, 300 miles (5 hrs. ; 60Kts.

A fine morning except for a few drops of rain at 06.35 ; wind; N.E. 10 m.p.h. ; hull and strut temperatures : 77 F.; 0-8 clouded Barometer 29'05 ; lake, calm.

At 06.45 Flight took off in succession, having warmed the engine through at the moorings. Average "take-off" time : 26 sees. (350 Gallons fuel).

Throughout the flight the weather was fine with blue sky. A few cumulus clouds about 1,000 ft. were met occasionally, causing bumpy conditions beneath them. The wind was E.N.E. from 8 to 12 knots. The open sea, which had been moderate off Pulicat, gradually reduced to slight at Coconada as the Flight went farther north.

Saturday January 21st , and Sunday January 22nd

in Coconada

The weather was fine, and the hull temperatures during the day averaged day 78 F. The wind was composed of the land and sea breezes up to about 10 m.p.h., which, at times, raised sufficient chop in the shallow water of this exposed anchorage to make it advisable to close the scuttles

Monday January 23rd

Coconada to Chilka Lake 225 miles. (3 hrs 45 mins. ;60knots).

A fine morning with 0.7 cloud ; wind N.E. 5 mph barometer:29 1; hull and strut temperatures : 75 F

Maj. C. Hodding (Officer Commanding East Coast battalion Auxiliary Force) was carried (with the approval of Army Headquarters, Madras as a passenger on this flight, in S. 1151.

The Flight took off in formation in 30 secs., and after circling in Cononada left for Chilka Lake at 07.00 following the coast the whole way and over Vizagapatam, where large new harbour works are in progress. When completed, this port might be suitable for a seaplane Base. Several Rivers were passed, which appeared to be suitable for emergency landings. After circling the large crowds which had collected near the Rambha Palace, and on the shores of the south End of Chilka Lake, the flight landed in formation at 10.40. The Flight was welcomed by the Rajah of Khallikote and Atagada who entertained the Fight most generously during their stay.

The Flight were the first aircraft to be seen in the area, and their visit Created great interest. The Rajah of Khallikote had invited a large house party to meet the flight, including the Rajahs of Nilgire and Mandasa, and the district officers from the neighbouring districts. Large crowds of Indians had assembled on the shores of the lake, and special trains were run to bring in the residents from the more distant areas. The Rajah gave large lunchon and Dinner parties, and after the later, the villagers of the surrounding villages gave very inter easting displays of Sword-dancing and their methods of warfare.

Tuesday January 24th to Thursday January 26th

Chilka Lake

The weather during the stay was fine with light land and sea breezes. The day temperature in the hull varied from 77 to 84. On two days there were morning mists on the lake from 06.00 to 08.30, which would have made it dangerous to take-off or land during this period. S. 1149 made a local flight on 26th, carrying the Rajah of Khallikote and the Rajah of Mandasa and his brother as passengers. The native boatmen made large profits by taking parties from the shores of the lake round the flying-boats.

Friday January 27th

Chilka Lake to Calcutta, 290 Miles (4 hrs. 10 mins. 70 knots.)

A misty morning with no wind. Temperature 74° F.; barometer 20.00. The mist did not clear sufficiently for the flying boats to take off until 07.40 ; the Flight then slipped, took off in formation, and after circling and dropping a message of thanks at Rhamba Palace, left for Calcutta at 07.50. The low clouds and mist slowly cleared with the sun, leaving some detached clouds about 1,000 ft. and a slight haze. The sea was calm and the surface wind light easterly at first, backing to northerly near the Hoogli ; the upper wind appeared to be southerly. The coast, which is low lying and has many rivers apparently suitable for emergency landings, was followed to Maipara Point, and the course was then set for the mouth of the Hoogli and thence up-river to Calcutta, which was circled at 11.45.

The Flight landed at Ichapur, on the Hoogli, some 15 miles north of Calcutta, at 12.00 and secured to the buoys which had been laid there about 100 yards from the east bank of the river. The tide was running out at about 3 knots, and the R.I.M. seamen in the skiffs attending the flying-boats found considerable difficulty in bringing their boats alongside the aircraft safely.

Saturday January 28th to Thursday February 2nd

Calcutta

In spite of the distance to Ichapur, His Excellency the Governor and many visitors came out to the flying - boats, and were shown over them. The officers and airmen on duty in the flying-boats found many mosquitoes on board at night.

Friday February 3rd

Calcutta to Akyab. 315 miles. (4 hrs. 30 mins.;70 knots.)

A fine morning with no wind ; slight mist; hull and strut temperatures : 65° F. ; barometer : 29-1 ; tide running out at 2 knots.

Colonel Shelmerdine, Director of Civil Aviation, India, embarked in S. 1151 at 06.30 for flight to Akyab. and Rangoon, in connection with the proposed Civil Air Route.

Flight slipped at 06.45, and whilst taxying slowly S. 1151 touched a sand bank near the centre of the river about half a mile below the mooring site ; this caused no damage. The Flight took off in formation at 07.05, and after circling Calcutta in formation at 07.25, flew on a compass course over the Sundarbans to Shahpuri Island, and thence down the coast of Akyab. The Delta is jungle, swamp and small paddy fields, with many rivers and creeks where a seaplane could land, but with no landing place for a landplane. Flight landed in formation at Akyab at 11.35.

Saturday February 4th and Sunday February 5th.

Akyab

The weather was fine and calm ; cool at nights with hull temperatures up to 85° F. by day. All airmen slept on board on Sunday night.

Monday February 6th

Akyab to Rangoon. 320 miles. (4 hrs.10 mins. ; 76 knots.)

Lieut.-Colonel Shelmerdine, Director of Civil Aviation in India, took passage in S. 1151. A fine, but misty morning ; wind, N.N.W., 3 m.p.h. ; strut and hull temperatures, 70° F. ; barometer, 29-00.

The Flight took off in formation in from 35 to 40 seconds at 07.00. and were clear of the mist at 800 ft. The mist was lying over the land from about miles north to 20 miles south of Akyab. It was clear over the sea, but sufficiently thick over the land to shut out all sight of the ground except for occasional small patches. At first the flight flew some miles to seaward to keep clear of the mist. Afterwards, following the coast, which was mostly picturesque, rugged and well wooded, with many rivers and bays which appeared suitable for emergency landing places.

At 09.55 the Flight turned inland near Broken Point and steered direct to Rangoon ; for the first 20 miles the creeks and rivers were small, but afterwards there were many stretches of water which appeared suitable for landing. After circling Rangoon in formation, the Flight landed in succession off Monkey Point at 11.10, and secured to buoys in the creek there, just above the pier by the Air Survey Co.'s slipway.

Tuesday, February 7, to Sunday, February 12.

Rangoon

The weather was fine, with heavy morning mists on several days, which persisted up to about 09.30. Light northerly winds prevailed, and it was hot, the maximum, hull temperatures being 90° F. The maximum tide was about 4 knots.

The visit of the Flight aroused a great deal of interest, and large numbers of visitors were shown over the flying-boats. All officers and airmen slept in the flying-boats on Sunday night.

Monday February 13th

Rangoon to Mergul, 310 miles. (4 hrs.15 rains. ; 73 knots.)

A fine morning with slight haze ; wind, north, 5 m.p.h. hull and strut temperatures : 71° F. ; no clouds ; tide, 2 knots. Officer Commanding Troops and many others came down to Monkey Point to see the start.

The Flight slipped at 06.40, taxied out of the creek, took off in formation at 07.00, and after circling Rangoon, left for Mergui. S. 1151 reported taking in water during the " take-off " ; this was found to be due to the lid of the lavatory not having been fastened sufficiently tightly ; this was rectified, and the water cleared out in flight.

The conditions during the flight were fine, but hazy, and the wind northerly, increasing to 10 knots in the Gulf of Martaban. The course followed from Rangoon was down the Rangoon River to Elephant Point; thence across the Gulf of Martaban to the mouth of the YE river and down the coast, turning eastward to pass over Tavoy, which was circled at 1,000, and down the Tavoy river and the coast to Mergui, where the Flight landed at 11.15, and secured to buoys laid near the east shore of Pataw Island and opposite Mergui Town. The coast lines and the Mergui Archipelago contain many places for emergency landings in seaplanes.

Tuesday February 14th and Wednesday February 15th

Mergui.

The weather was fine, although thunderstorms appeared to be threatening in the evenings. The. sea was calm with an occasional slight swell at the moorings. The conditions, both on shore where there was no electric light or fans, and on the flying boats were rather hot and sticky : the hull temperatures in the middle of the day rising to 95° F. The wind was mainly land and sea breezes up to 10 m.p.h. and the maximum tide at the moorings about1 kt. At night, considerable numbers of mosquitoes came out to the flying- boats from the shore. All officers and airmen slept on board on Wednesday night.

Thursday, February 16

Mergui-Penang. 475 Miles. (6 hrs. 25 ins. 74 knts.)

A fine morning with no wind ; 0-3 cloud ; hull temperature : 78 ; strut temperature: 75 ; barometer, 28-95 ; tide : i kt.

Took off in formation in 60 sees. (450 gallons) at 07.00 and circled Mcrgui.

The connecting strut between centre and starboard rudder of S.I 150 was seen to be disconnected from centre rudder and S.1150 was ordered to land immediately ; this she did, followed by remainder of flight at 07.10 ; all aircraft picked up their original buoys." The defect in S.1150, which did not affect the control or flying in any way, was found to be due to the breakage of the eye bolt, in the. centre rudder, which carries the connecting rod to the starboard rudder. This was temporarily repaired by substituting for the broken eye bolt a Tommy bar suitably bent and drilled. A short test flight showed that the repair was satisfactory.

The Flight took off again at 09.00 in 50 secs. And left for Penang. Vicktoria Point was passed at 11.00, and after circling Penang, the flight Landed in formation at 15.25, and secured to buoys which had been laid off the Harbour Master' s Pier at Glugor, about three miles south of George Town, Penang.

The weather during the flight was fine except for slight drizzle, which started when over Penang ; the sky then looked very threatening to the eastward. The winds were light, variable and northerly; there was a small amount of detached cloud and a slight haze. The route was dotted with picturesque wooded islands, many of which would afford shelter in emergency, but might be of some danger to aircraft flying low in heavy rain or bad viability at time of the flight the sea was calm and flying boats could have landed or taken off anywhere.

Refuelling to 250 gallons was started as soon as the flying boats had moored up, sampans being used to bring the barrels from the lighter to thr flying boats. By the time two boats had refuelled the thunderstorms, which had been seen in the distance before landing, broke over Penang with a heavy downpour of rain and a wind which made it impossible to get the sampans with the fuel from the lighter to the fling boats. As this continued till dark , the remainder of the refuelling was postponed till the next day, and officers and airmen off duty went ashore as soon as the weather permitted

Friday, February 17th to Wednesday February 22nd

Penang

The weather was generally overcast : light rain fell nearly all the night and there were several showers during the days, but there were no more Heavy storms

It was rather hot and sticky, except immediately after the rain; the hull temperatures varied from 78° F. at at night to 92° F. during the day. The wind was light and variable.

The visit of the Flight to Penang aroused a great deal of interest, and many residents came out to Glugor and were shown over the boats

Thursday February 23rd

Penang to Port Swettenham 160 miles (2hrs. 20 mins. ; 68 kts)

A fine, but still morning : wind N.E. 1 mph hull and strut temperatures: 81° F. ; barometer : 29.00; sky: 0.9 clouded; tide 0.5 knts

At the request of the Officer Commanding Penang and Port Wellesley volunteers, the Adjutant Capt. Prattley (Norfolk Regiment), who was proceeding from Penang to Kuala Lumpur on duty, was carried as a passenger in S.1150. The Flight took off in formation in 25 to 30 secs. (250 Gallons) at 09.00, and flew down the coast in fine weather, with detached cloud for the first hour, after which the clouds were continuous at 1000ft. or lower, and there were occasional rain squalls. Down to and including Pangkor there appeared to be many places suitable for emergency landing for seaplanes in bad weather, but farther south it was not so favourable. The Flight landed in formation at Port Swettenham at 11.20 and secured to buoys laid in a well-sheltered position.

Friday February 24th to Monday February 27th

Port Swettenham

At the request of His Excellency, The Governor of the Straits Settlements thee flight to Singapore was postponed fron February 27th to February 28th to enable him and his staff to fly down with the flight. The Air Ministry and Singapore were informed of changes of the programme.

The weather was fine, except for onr shower, but frequently overcast, and it was hot and sticky, both in the boats (up to 90 F) and on shore the winds were light and variable, and the tide ran up to 2 kts. at the Moorings.

Tuesday February 28th

Port Swettenham to Singapore - 210 miles (2hrs. 30 mins. ; 84 kts.)

A fine morning. The moon conditions were wind N.W., 3 m.p.h.; clouds; 0.5; barometer 29.00 hull & strut temperatures: 92° F.

His Excellency the Governor of the Straits Settlements (Sir Hugh Clifford) and his staff, arrived at Port Swettenham at 14 20, and were accommodated in Different Flying Boats

The Flight took off in formation at 14.35 and flew down the coast to Singapore. The wind was north-westerly, 10 to 15 kts and the sky overcast for the majority of the flight. It was Rather bumpy over the land, but smooth over the sea. As the flight flew south the weather became thundery with bad atmospherics, and several heavy rainstorms were seen in the neighbourhood of Johore Straits. The flight ran into light rain over Singapore Town, and landed in formation at 17.05 in moderate rain, off the site of the air base at Seletar, securing to the buoys which had been laid there for them. A Large party including Lady cliford, the colonial Secretary, representatives of the general Officer Commanding, and the Senior Naval Officer, had assembled at Seletar to welcome His Excellency the Governor and the Flight. A guard from the Base Party was put on board the flying-boats for the night and all the flying crews went into Singapore where they were accommodated.

Total distance flown from Karachi – 4,600 Nautical Miles: average flying time per aircraft 67 hrs. 50 mins. ; average ground speed, 66 knots; total

local flying at Karachi, 8 hrs. 40 ; total local flighting time, escorts, etc. during the stage, 5 hrs. 50 mins.