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When the Royal Flying Corps crossed to France in August 1914 to take its place alongside the Poor Bloody Infantry (PBI) and the other elements of the British Expeditionary Force (BEF), the military authorities mainly saw the aeroplane as a platform for reconnaissance.
In itself, that was something of a ‘visionary’ step forward from the 1910 statement by the then Professional Head of the Army who said that military aviation was “a useless and expensive fad”.
This lecture examines the origins of the Royal Flying Corps who travelled to France in the aircraft they had. Driven by the necessity of war, there were resulting developments in tactics, equipment, communications and weapons in the first year of the Great War.
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