L. E. Baynes
Leslie Everett Baynes, AFRAeS
Royal Aeronautical Society
The Royal Aeronautical Society, also known as the RAeS, is a multidisciplinary professional institution dedicated to the global aerospace community.-Function:...

 (23 March 1902 – 13 March 1989) was an English
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...

 aeronautical engineer.

Early life

Born at Barnes, Surrey
Surrey is a county in the South East of England and is one of the Home Counties. The county borders Greater London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire and Berkshire. The historic county town is Guildford. Surrey County Council sits at Kingston upon Thames, although this has been part of...

, on 23 March 1902 the son of James and Florence Baynes. Baynes was educated at Gresham's School
Gresham's School
Gresham’s School is an independent coeducational boarding school in Holt in North Norfolk, England, a member of the HMC.The school was founded in 1555 by Sir John Gresham as a free grammar school for forty boys, following King Henry VIII's dissolution of the Augustinian priory at Beeston Regis...

, Norfolk
Norfolk is a low-lying county in the East of England. It has borders with Lincolnshire to the west, Cambridgeshire to the west and southwest and Suffolk to the south. Its northern and eastern boundaries are the North Sea coast and to the north-west the county is bordered by The Wash. The county...

, leaving school at the age of sixteen to join an aircraft company. He developed engineering skills at school and in industry.


After leaving school, Baynes started work in the fledgling aircraft industry with Airco (The Aircraft Manufacturing Company)
The Aircraft Manufacturing Company Limited was established in 1912 by George Holt Thomas at The Hyde in Hendon, north London, England.-Geoffrey de Havilland:...

 at Hendon Aerodrome
Hendon Aerodrome
Hendon Aerodrome was an aerodrome in Hendon, north London, England that, between 1908 and 1968, was an important centre for aviation.It was situated in Colindale, seven miles north west of Charing Cross. It nearly became "the Charing Cross of the UK's international air routes", but for the...

. From there, he moved on to Short Brothers
Short Brothers
Short Brothers plc is a British aerospace company, usually referred to simply as Shorts, that is now based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Founded in 1908, Shorts was the first company in the world to make production aircraft and was a manufacturer of flying boats during the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s...

 at Rochester, where he redesigned the Short Singapore flying boat
Flying boat
A flying boat is a fixed-winged seaplane with a hull, allowing it to land on water. It differs from a float plane as it uses a purpose-designed fuselage which can float, granting the aircraft buoyancy. Flying boats may be stabilized by under-wing floats or by wing-like projections from the fuselage...


In 1930
1930 in aviation
This is a list of aviation-related events from 1930:- Events :* The Surrey Aero Club inaugurates recreational flights from Gatwick Race Course .* The German airship LZ 127 Graf Zeppelin makes its first crossing of the South Atlantic....

, Baynes designed the Scud light sailplane, built at first by Brant Aircraft Limited at Croydon
Croydon is a town in South London, England, located within the London Borough of Croydon to which it gives its name. It is situated south of Charing Cross...

. The Scud was successful, and in 1931, Baynes went into partnership with E.D. Abbott as Abbott-Baynes Sailplanes Ltd
Abbott-Baynes Sailplanes Ltd
Abbott-Baynes Sailplanes Ltd was a 1930s glider manufacturing company based at Wrecclesham, near Farnham, Surrey. It was founded as a subsidiary of E. D. Abbott Ltd in 1931 by L. E. Baynes and E. D. Abbott to build the Scud, a glider designed by Baynes in 1930, the prototype of which was built by...

, of Farnham
Farnham is a town in Surrey, England, within the Borough of Waverley. The town is situated some 42 miles southwest of London in the extreme west of Surrey, adjacent to the border with Hampshire...

, Surrey
Surrey is a county in the South East of England and is one of the Home Counties. The county borders Greater London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire and Berkshire. The historic county town is Guildford. Surrey County Council sits at Kingston upon Thames, although this has been part of...

, to build Scud I sailplanes, and later the Scud II (1932). In 1935, a Scud II flown by Mungo Buxton took the British Height Record for a glider to 8,750 feet (2,666 m).

In 1935, Sir John Carden, an authority on tank design who was interested in gliding, outlined to Baynes his requirements for a self-launching sailplane. Baynes designed the Scud III sailplane, built by Abbott-Baynes Sailplanes, which when fitted with an engine was called the Carden-Baynes Auxiliary
Carden-Baynes Auxiliary
The Carden-Baynes Auxiliary was the first motor glider with a retractable engine and propeller; it is known as the Abbott-Baynes Scud III when engineless...

. That carried a retractable 249 cc Villiers
Villiers Engineering
Villiers Engineering was a manufacturer of motorcycles and cycle parts, and an engineering company based in Villiers Street, Wolverhampton, England....

 engine mounted on the top of the fuselage. The engine drove a pusher-propeller and produced 9 bhp, and the capacity of the fuel tank was enough to run the engine for thirty minutes. The 249 cc Auxiliary is believed to be the lowest-powered aircraft in the history of powered flight.

Also in 1935, the Mignet HM.14
Mignet HM.14
The Mignet HM.14 Flying Flea is a single-seat light aircraft first flown in 1933, designed for amateur construction. It was the first of a family of aircraft collectively known as Flying Fleas....

 Pou du Ciel "Flying Flea" built and flown by Stephen Appleby
Stephen Appleby
Stephen Villiers Appleby was an English pilot, and leading proponent of the Mignet Pou-du-Ciel "Flying Flea" aircraft.-Early years:...

, was rebuilt by Abbott-Baynes Sailplanes, incorporating modifications designed by Baynes, who had witnessed its forced landing at Heston Aerodrome. The success of the Flying Flea
Flying Flea
The Flying Flea is a large family of light homebuilt aircraft first flown in 1933.-Development:The Flying Flea family of aircraft was designed by Frenchman Henri Mignet....

 family of homebuilt aircraft arose from an English translation of Mignet's book, The Flying Flea (1935), showing readers how to build their own aircraft at home. Abbott-Baynes Sailplanes Ltd went into limited production of a developed version named the Baynes Cantilever Pou.

Following the death of John Carden in December 1935, in April 1936, Baynes set up Carden-Baynes Aircraft at Heston Aerodrome
Heston Aerodrome
Heston Aerodrome was a 1930s airfield located to the west of London, UK, operational between 1929 and 1947. It was situated on the border of the Heston and Cranford areas of Hounslow, Middlesex...

, and designed the Carden-Baynes Bee
Carden-Baynes Bee
The Carden-Baynes Bee was a 1930s British two-seat aircraft, with twin engines in pusher configuration buried in the wings. The wings rotated for storage. Financial problems limited the Bee to a single flight.-Design and development:...

, a two-seat wooden aircraft with two Carden-Ford engines in pusher configuration.

During the Second World War, Baynes was the aviation adviser to Alan Muntz & Co at Heston Aerodrome, specialists in weapons systems, and he organized an aircraft division of the company. In 1941, he put up a proposal for a detachable wing with a 100-foot wingspan which when attached to a tank
A tank is a tracked, armoured fighting vehicle designed for front-line combat which combines operational mobility, tactical offensive, and defensive capabilities...

 would turn it into a glider. This concept was developed as far as the famous Baynes Bat
Baynes Bat
|-See also:-References:* *...

prototype, with most of the test flights being piloted by Flight Lieutenant
Flight Lieutenant
Flight lieutenant is a junior commissioned rank in the Royal Air Force and the air forces of many Commonwealth countries. It ranks above flying officer and immediately below squadron leader. The name of the rank is the complete phrase; it is never shortened to "lieutenant"...

 Robert Kronfeld
Robert Kronfeld
Squadron Leader Robert Kronfeld, AFC, was an Austrian-born gliding champion and sailplane designer of the 1920s and 30s. He became a British subject and an RAF test pilot...


Baynes also worked on designs for long-range bombers, and the V-22 Osprey
V-22 Osprey
The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey is an American multi-mission, military, tiltrotor aircraft with both a vertical takeoff and landing , and short takeoff and landing capability...

 was an American aircraft very similar to a bomber design submitted to the British government by Baynes during the Second World War.

After the war, in the 1940s and 1950s, Baynes was busy with research in the area of variable-sweep supersonic aircraft. He also designed interiors for airliners, invented the vertical lift plane and the high-speed hydrofoil
A hydrofoil is a foil which operates in water. They are similar in appearance and purpose to airfoils.Hydrofoils can be artificial, such as the rudder or keel on a boat, the diving planes on a submarine, a surfboard fin, or occur naturally, as with fish fins, the flippers of aquatic mammals, the...


Baynes designed the Youngman-Baynes High Lift
Youngman-Baynes High Lift
|-See also:...

, an experimental, flying test-bed for the system of slotted flaps invented by R.T. Youngman. It used components from the Percival Proctor
Percival Proctor
The Percival Proctor was a British radio trainer and communications aircraft of the Second World War. The Proctor was a single-engine, low-wing monoplane with seating for three or four, depending on the model.-Design and development:...

, and was built by Heston Aircraft Company Ltd. The first flight was at Heston Aerodrome on 5 February 1948, carrying the military serial VT789.

A Scud II built in 1935 is still airworthy, and is believed to be the oldest flying glider in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...



  • 1919 patented first automatic variable pitch airscrew
    Controllable pitch propeller
    A controllable pitch propeller or variable pitch propeller is a type of propeller with blades that can be rotated around their long axis to change their pitch...

  • 1924-1927 responsible for aerodynamic design of Short Singapore Flying-Boat
  • 1929-1930 Designed and manufactured first all-British glider to soar, the Scud I
  • 1933-1935 Scud II sailplanes; British height record holder and international event winner
  • 1935 Designed and built Scud III; first retractable-motored sailplane
  • 1937 Designed Carden-Baynes Bee, first twin-engined pusher
    Pusher configuration
    In a craft with a pusher configuration the propeller are mounted behind their respective engine. According to Bill Gunston, a "pusher propeller" is one mounted behind engine so that drive shaft is in compression...

     monoplane with wing-buried engines
  • 1939 Project-designed gas turbine system 100 passenger long-range aircraft
  • 1938 Designed and patented first V/TOL swivel turbine 'Heliplane'
  • 1939-1945 Designed and built for Ministry of Supply
    Ministry of Supply
    The Ministry of Supply was a department of the UK Government formed in 1939 to co-ordinate the supply of equipment to all three British armed forces, headed by the Minister of Supply. There was, however, a separate ministry responsible for aircraft production and the Admiralty retained...

     (M.O.S.) experimental tail-less flying wing, Baynes Bat
    Baynes Bat
    |-See also:-References:* *...

    , for tank-carrying project initiated by Winston Churchill
    Winston Churchill
    Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, was a predominantly Conservative British politician and statesman known for his leadership of the United Kingdom during the Second World War. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest wartime leaders of the century and served as Prime Minister twice...

    ; Designed and implemented conversion of Boston Bombers to Turbinlite
    The Helmore/GEC Turbinlite was a 2,700 million candela searchlight fitted in the nose of a number of British Douglas Havoc night fighters during the early part of the Second World War and around the time of The Blitz....

     searchlight aircraft, submarine guided missiles and other weapons and equipment for the RAF
  • 1946-1948 Designed and built for M.O.S., Youngman-Baynes High-Lift
    Youngman-Baynes High Lift
    |-See also:...

     Research Aircraft
  • 1949 Designed and patented the first Variable-Sweep Fighter Aircraft for supersonic flight
  • 1950-1962 Designed and manufactured airliner equipment for major aircraft companies and airlines
  • 1963-1964 Designed and patented a high-speed hydrofoil
    A hydrofoil is a foil which operates in water. They are similar in appearance and purpose to airfoils.Hydrofoils can be artificial, such as the rudder or keel on a boat, the diving planes on a submarine, a surfboard fin, or occur naturally, as with fish fins, the flippers of aquatic mammals, the...

     sea craft (made secret by the ministry)

External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.