Projected Images (Beginners) - No Longer Contested
This was written by Keith Donald who was a founder member of the Society.
The Swallow Cup is one of the former Southern Cross Aero Club’s trophies.
The flying club specialised in free flight guidance – some as large as 14 feet in span. We had a strong section designing and flying tailless gliders for which the club presented a trophy – the Swallow Cup. We rapidly became
recognised as the country's leaders in these specialised aircraft, winning many competitions and breaking records (I held a record for a short time.) The largest of our gliders measured 24 feet along the leading edge of the wing. Each year an international competition was held on the continent for tailless models and we decided to enter. The competition in 1956 took place at Arnhem in Holland and the three of us cycled over to fly the 5 models eventually winning the team event. I was a team member and placed fifth. In 1946, De Havilands built the DH108 tailless aircraft intended to break the world air speed record. Unofficially named Swallow the aircraft broke up in the air over Gravesend and the pilot Geoffrey de Havilland was killed.
Shortly before, the Southern Cross club chairman had met Geoffrey de
Havilland and he believed the flying wing was the shape of the future. The
club was experimenting with tailless gliders and to encourage their
development, the chairman presented a cup - the Swallow Cup - named after the ill fated DH 108.