H.J.D. Astley


Henry Jacob Delaval Frankland-Russell-Astley (though normally just called Henry Astley) was born on 3 March 1888 in London, the son of Bertram Frankland-Russell-Astley and Lady Florence Russell-Astley (née Conyngham). Chequers Court, Ellesborough, Buckinghamshire, today the British Prime Minister's residence, was at the time the Astley family country home.

Astley was commissioned into the 3rd (Prince of Wales's) Dragoon Guards as a 2nd Lieutenant on 27 January 1909, but resigned his commission on 7 July. This may have been associated with the state of his finances, as a Bankruptcy Notice was issued against him on 7 September.

Whatever the state of Astley's finances, by December 1909 he had built a monoplane at Brooklands; damaged in trials, Astley built a second machine from the remains of the first. Neither machine is likely to have flown. Astley gained his RAeC Aviators Certificate on 31 December 1910 (awarded on 24 January 1911), flying a Sommer biplane at Brooklands belonging to the Universal Aviation Co.

Throughout the 1911 and 1912 seasons, he carried out many exhibition flights and flew competitively, but unfortunately was killed in an accident while flying a Deperdussin monoplane at the Balmoral Show Grounds, Belfast on 21 September 1912.

Company References
  1. British Aircraft Before The Great War, Michael H. Goodall and Albert E. Tagg (Schiffer Publishing Ltd., 2001)

Project Data top

Project No
Type No
Alternative Name(s)
Spec (Requirement)
     Monoplane No. 1    1909    Proto  1  1S, 1E tractor monoplane   1,2,3
     Monoplane No. 2    1910    Proto  1  1S, 1E tractor monoplane   1,2,3

Project References
  1. British Aircraft Before The Great War, Michael H. Goodall and Albert E. Tagg (Schiffer Publishing Ltd, 2001)
  2. British Aircraft 1809-1914, Peter Lewis Putnam, 1962)
  3. Bleriot in Britain 1899-1927, Say Sanger (Air-Britain (Historians), 2008)

Production Data

   Total Astley Production     2   

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Revised at Version 1.4.5
  • Improved Astley personal details.
Revised at Version 1.3.0
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V1.4.4 Created by Roger Moss. Last updated August 2020