Air Navigation Co. Ltd.
Air Navigation and Engineering Company


Norbert Antoine Chereau (b. 1863, d. 29 September 1939) came to England in 1893, where he became interested in the Blériot motor lamp business (made his fortune manufacturing automotive accessories), subsequently becoming the London Manager. Having taken the keenest interest in the early flying experiments of M. Blériot, he naturally took charge of the arrangements for the crossing of the Channel in July, 1909. After this he relinquished the lamp business to devote himself entirely to aeronautics. A Blériot School was established at Hendon on 1 October 1910, and in 1914 sheds were taken at Brooklands and enlarged to provide offices and manufacturing facilities.

Realising that a British company would have more chance to sell his models to the British government, in 1915, Blériot set up the Blériot Manufacturing Aircraft Company Ltd. The hoped for orders did not follow, as the Blériot design was seen as outdated. Following an unresolved conflict over control of the company, it was wound up on 24 July 1916. Even before the closure of this company Blériot was planning a new venture in the UK. Initially named Blériot and SPAD Ltd and based in Addlestone, the company was wound up in 1916 and reconstituted under Norbert Chereau in 1917 as the Air Navigation Co. Ltd. and became the Air Navigation and Engineering Company in August, 1919.

In 1922, following a requirement for a passenger and mail carrier for the Australian Larkin Aircraft Supply Company Limited, the company built a 10-seat biplane airliner, the Handasyde H.2, originally designed by G. H. Handasyde, who had no production facilities for his own Handasyde Aircraft Co. Ltd.. The aircraft was not a success, but was later developed into the ANEC III. The first original designs by ANEC were three monoplanes (ANEC I, IA and II), designed by W.S. Shackleton (later of Beardmores), which were among Britain's earliest ultralight aircraft.

Following the failure of the Handasyde H.2, the aircraft was redesigned John Bewsher, late of the Sopwith company, in 1926 and three ANEC.III’s were produced to the same requirement of the Larkin Company, and contributed to the development of aviation in Australia, two being converted to Larkin Lascowls, one of which was not retired until June 1932. The company’s last design, the ANEC IV biplane, also by John Bewsher was for the 1926 Daily Mail competition for two seaters fitted with engines of less than 170lb.

ANEC survived in a difficult aviation climate until late 1926, producing Blériot Whippet cars in addition to its light aircraft, but recievers were appointed in November 1926. Following Norbert Chereau's retirement, the company went into liquidation in 1928.

Company References
  1. British Light Aeroplanes, Arthur W.J.G. Ord-Hume (GMS Enterprises, 2000)
  2. Flight Magazine May 22, 1914.

Project Data

Project No

Type No


Alternative Name(s)







  I   1923  Proto 31S, 1E high-wing light plane 1,2,4,6,8
  II   1924  Proto 1 2S, 1E high-wing light plane 1,2,4,7,9
  III   1926  Prdn 3 7S, 1E biplane transport 1,3,10
  IV Missel Thrush  1926  Proto 1 2S, 1E light biplane 1,2,4,5,11

Project References
  1. British Civil Aircraft Since 1919, Vol 1, A.J. Jackson (Putnam, 1973)
  2. British Light Aeroplanes, Arthur W.J.G. Ord-Hume (GMS Enterprises, 2000)
  3. British Commercial Aircraft, Arthur W.J.G. Ord-Hume (GMS Enterprises, 2003)
  4. Ultralights - The Early British Classics, Richard Riding (Patrick Stevens Ltd., 1987)
  5. Aeroplane Monthly Magazine, Jan, 1979
  6. Aeroplane Monthly Magazine, Sep, 1984
  7. Aeroplane Monthly Magazine, Jun, 1985
  8. Flight Magazine, Mar 29, 1923
  9. Flight Magazine, Sep 25, 1924
  10. Flight Magazine, Feb 11, 1926
  11. Flight Magazine, Sep 9, 1926

Production Summary

Type No


Qty (New)

Qty (Conv.)









  ANEC IV Missel Thrush



   Total ANEC Production     8   

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V1.3.0 Created by Roger Moss. Last updated February 2017