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37. Situation


One of the items we need to get hold of is a seat. In those days, aircraft seats were commonly made of wicker, and ours is no exception.

I contacted a local basket maker, Ed Hawan, who’s in the Ludlow market most weeks, and he agreed to have a look at the project. When we got to looking at it in detail, he started scratching his head, and said that he thought he’d seen something similar on a website, and after a bit he realised that it was the website of P H Coate and sons, at We couldn’t find the picture, but I emailed them, and had a phone call from Jonathan Coate, who confirmed that indeed they had been contacted by British Aerospace last year to make a seat for a replica Bristol Fighter which had been made to commemorate the centenary of the founding of the British and Colonial Aeroplane Co. (subsequently Bristol Aircraft), and that they’d made two while they were at it, one of which now resided in their museum. Jonathan checked and found that what we wanted – dimensions, design, the whole caboodle – exactly matched what they had.

The picture of the seat from the parts list

Seat in Coates museum

And you can see that’s the case – just check here. Couldn’t be better!

After that, Jonathan started asking about my flying experience, and after a bit it transpired that he’d flown a microlight many years ago, so we spent a happy time swapping memories…


From → Building, Research

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