17/05/2024
Aviation Pioneers

Scottish Airman and Aviation Pioneer Bertram Dickson

Bertram Dickson (21 December 1873 – 28 September 1913) was a pioneer Scottish airman and the first British serviceman to qualify as a pilot. His exploits in the air, watched by Winston Churchill and Lord Kitchener, indirectly led to the creation of the Royal Flying Corps.

Dickson was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, on 21 December 1873. He was educated at Edinburgh Academy and the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. After graduating from Sandhurst, Dickson served as an officer in the Royal Engineers.

Bertram Dickson – The First British Serviceman

In 1910, Dickson became interested in aviation and began taking flying lessons at the Blériot School of Flying in Étampes, France. He became the first British serviceman to qualify as a pilot on 25 August 1910.

Dickson’s exploits in the air caught the attention of Winston Churchill and Lord Kitchener. Churchill, who was then First Lord of the Admiralty, was impressed by Dickson’s flying skills and saw the potential of aviation for military use. Kitchener, who was then Secretary of State for War, was also interested in aviation and saw it as a way to improve the British military’s surveillance capabilities.

Dickson’s demonstrations of his flying skills helped to convince Churchill and Kitchener of the need for a British air force. In 1912, the British government created the Royal Flying Corps (RFC). Dickson was one of the first officers to be commissioned into the RFC.

source: https://www.earlyaviators.com/edickson.htm

Bertram Dickson – 28 September 1913

Dickson served with the RFC during the First World War. He was killed in a flying accident on 28 September 1913. He was posthumously awarded the Air Force Cross.

Dickson is considered to be one of the pioneers of British aviation. His exploits in the air helped to pave the way for the creation of the Royal Flying Corps and the development of British aviation.

References

Bertram Dickson: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bertram_Dickson
Captain Bertram Dickson: Biography on Undiscovered Scotland: https://www.undiscoveredscotland.co.uk/usbiography/d/bertramdickson.html
Bertram Dickson – The Early Birds of Aviation: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bertram_Dickson
Bertram Dickson: https://maisons-champagne.com/fr/encyclopedies/berceau-mondial-de-l-aviation/histoire-de-l-aviation/article/les-maisons-de-champagne-font-decoller-les-1ers