Tag Archives: George Hancock Reid

25 March 1916 – A Seaplane Adventure

Following the successful raid on Zeebrugge, the RNAS decided to carry out a sol raid on the airship sheds at Hoyer. The attacking force this time was much smaller though consisting only of three Short 184 and two Sopwith ‘ Baby’ seaplanes, carried in HMS Vindex, supported by the whole of the available Harwich force, in turn supported by the Battle Cruiser Fleet from Rosyth.

The raid turned into a bit of disaster as there were no airship sheds at Hoyer and three of the five aircraft were lost. Of those that did return, one pilots reported that the sheds were in fact inland at Tondern, but his bombs had jammed in the racks.

Flight Sub-Lieutenant Cyril Gradwick Knight and Midshipman Stanley Edwin Hoblyn were shot down in their Short 184 (8383) and captured.

Short 184 (8040) with Flight Lieutenant George Hancock Reid and Chief Petty Officer Richard Mullins had dropped one of their three 65lb. bombs on an unknown building and then followed the coastline to Hoyer. They then attempted to fly inland to Tondern, but were forced back by bad weather. Passing over Hoyer again they spotted one of the Sopwith Baby seaplanes (8153). They landed on the water to discover the pilot Flight Lieutenant John Findlay Hay trying to restart his engine

Reid attempted to take off in the Short with Hay on one of the wings. They reached the island of Sylt when the port side
engine suddenly cut out. A broken magneto meant that the engine could not be fixed, and the seaplane attempted to taxi out to their ship on the remaining engine. They attempted to capture a German sailboat but the seaplane was almost unsteerable in the more choppy open sea. At that point a motor-boat filled with soldiers appeared and two German seaplanes landed on the water immediately behind the Short. All three men were captured.