Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Flt Lt Christopher Stainbank Staniland 1905-1942

Christopher Stainbank Staniland was born in Finchley on October 7th, 1905. He was educated at Tonbridge and entered the Royal Air Force in 1924. In 1928 he was serving with No. 41 fighter squadron, and later that year was transferred to the High-speed Flight of the R.A.F., which competed in the Schneider Trophy contests. He was also a well-known racing car driver, and his sense of speed and distance, plus a pair of sensitive hands, made him outstanding in both piloting and driving. Staniland transferred to the R.A.F. Reserve in 1929, and joined Simmonds Aircraft, Ltd. (then controlled by Mr. Oliver E. Simmonds, now an M.P.). From there he went to
the Fairey Aviation Co. as a test pilot. He flew the prototype P.4/34 Fulmar (K5099) on 13 January 1937 at Fairey Aviation's Great West Aerodrome (now London Heathrow Airport).He remained as Chief Test Pilot until his death in a flying accident in 1942.