Olivia de Havilland - family connections

Discussion in 'General' started by smdarby, Jul 27, 2020.

  1. smdarby

    smdarby Patron Patron

    Just read this in The Times' obituaries about Olivia de Havilland, who died yesterday:

    "On her father’s side, Olivia was related to Sir Geoffrey de Havilland, the engineer who designed the Mosquito multi-role combat aircraft."
  2. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    Although Geoffrey de Havilland owned the company and framed the concept and fully backed selling it to the Air Ministry the designer of the Mosquito was Ronald Bishop who also later designed the Comet jet airliner.
    My late wife's father worked as a lead carpenter on the prototype Mosquito.
    Aircraft that Geoffrey de Havilland did design included the BE2 and the Airco Dh 4. The Rolls Royce engined version of the Dh 4 was the fastest operational bomber of WW1 outpacing its fighter opposition and could be said to have originated the concept of the very fast day bomber.
  3. bamboo43

    bamboo43 Very Senior Member Patron

    I watched the episode from the Narrow Escapes series about Operation Jericho, the RAF's strategic bombing of the prison at Amiens in France. This had a couple of minutes devoted to the Mosquito Bomber and it's construction in wood etc. Very informative.
  4. Roy Martin

    Roy Martin Senior Member

    They built much more than that, including the Comet and the Vampire.
  5. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    For which worth visiting the Mosquito Museum near London Colney if its still open (last there over 20 years ago). My wife remembered some of the later types (like the Sea Vixen) from her time in the de Havilland drawing office at Hatfield
  6. BrianHall1963

    BrianHall1963 Well-Known Member

    It’s just had a new hanger built on the site to give it more space my work mate is a volunteer there he’s a carpenter
    Robert-w likes this.
  7. Robert-w

    Robert-w Banned

    Good to know. When we visited my wife let slip that her dad had been a master chippy on the prototype. He was remembered and we got the royal tour treatment being taken to parts not open to the public. There were parts of a BE2c which they were hoping to rebuild, do you know if they ever did?
    She always claimed to have been the first woman, other than a cleaner or a tea lady, to work in the drawing office at de Havillands - things have changed thank goodness.
    Tom OBrien and Chris C like this.
  8. BrianHall1963

    BrianHall1963 Well-Known Member

    Will ask in the morning and let you know
  9. BrianHall1963

    BrianHall1963 Well-Known Member

    BE2c is still in bits around the walls don’t think it will be put together any time soon .

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