Arthur Davenport (aeronautical engineer)

Summary

Arthur Davenport F.R.Ae.S (9 July 1891[1] – 31 August 1976[2]) was a British aircraft engineer working for Westland Aircraft in Yeovil, Somerset.

Arthur Davenport
Born9 July 1891
Died31 August 1976
NationalityBritish
Engineering career
DisciplineAeronautical engineering
Employer(s)Westland Aircraft Ltd

When the Westland Aircraft Works was created by the Petter twins in 1915, Arthur was one of the first draughtsman to be recruited from Petter's Ltd.[3] He was chief designer from 1919,[4] working under the direction of Teddy Petter from May 1934[5] until 1944, when Petter left (to join English Electric)[6] and Davenport became technical director. According to Harald Penrose, he was made the scapegoat for the late delivery of the Wyvern and headed into retirement in March 1952.[7]

In the 1920s, when most aircraft were biplanes, Arthur was a strong proponent of the monoplane.[8] Most of his monoplane designs were high-winged or parasol, culminating in the Lysander. During his career he was involved in the design of the following fixed-wing aircraft.

In the early 1930s he worked with Juan de la Cierva to develop the Cierva C.29 and Cierva CL.20 autogyros. It was this interest in rotary winged aircraft that would lead Westland to manufacture Sikorsky helicopters in the early 1950s.[12]

PatentsEdit

  • GB patent 742240, Arthur Davenport, "Improvements in or relating to apparatus for facilitating landing of aircraft", issued 1955-12-21, assigned to Westland Aircraft Ltd 

NotesEdit

  1. ^ 1939 Register for Yeovil, Somerset, TNA ref: RG101/7054A/018/1 Letter Code: WOVP
  2. ^ Penrose 1984, p. 376.
  3. ^ James 1991, p. 8.
  4. ^ "Westland Director Retires", Flight: 28, 2 January 1953
  5. ^ Penrose 1984, p. 137.
  6. ^ Penrose 1984, p. 229.
  7. ^ Penrose 1984, p. 275.
  8. ^ James 1991, p. 21.
  9. ^ Flight 28 August 1919
  10. ^ a b "Westlands of Yeovil", Flight: 1054, 7 August 1919
  11. ^ Penrose 1984, p. 33.
  12. ^ "Arthur Davenport". Flight International: 785. 11 September 1976.

ReferencesEdit

  • James, Derek N (1991). Westland aircraft since 1915. Putnam. ISBN 0-85177-847-X.
  • Penrose, Harald (1984). Adventure with fate. Airlife.