A few years ago I was a regular reader of a monthly magazine titled Best of British. Its range of subject matter was, and still is, based on the periods of recent times within readers' recollections. So, the matters of everyday life from the Thirties onwards are featured in its articles, and there is a varied collection of correspondence from the journal's readers.
Recently it appears that the publishers have had bulk deliveries sent to a selection of retailers, including supermarkets. I am uncertain how extensive or systematic these piles have been, but I did take the opportunity to re-acquaint myself with Best of British, and I quickly re-accustomed myself to its comforting style.
|Airfix kit COURTESY BEST OF BRITISH MAGAZINE|
|St Albans Refrigerator shortly after closure in 1964|
COURTESY ST ALBANS MUSEUMS
The model featured in BOB's September issue was de Havilland DH82a Tiger Moth, an Airfix kit in red and white. In real life this was one of several small civil aircraft types manufactured by the company when it was still operating from Stag Lane, Edgware, before moving to Hatfield. Later still the Tiger Moth manufacture moved to Oxford. Apart from use as trainers for military and civilian use, air taxis and leisure craft, this little bi-plane was affordable by individuals with a good level of income, or for hire by the hour from flying schools.
|de Havilland production brochure for the Tiger Moth series|
COURTESY IAN GRACE
It is testament to the design and quality of this little craft from Hatfield that versions of the Moth are still in use today. And if you should be wondering about the name applied to this series it would be useful to understand that Geoffrey de Havilland, founder and owner of the company, was an enthusiastic entomologist. When not in the factory and at the drawing board he could often be seen wandering the extensive site on which the runway was laid out, searching for evidence of a wide range of insects.
So, there were tiger moths in the grass, tiger moths on the runway and in the air, and there were, and still are, kits of tiger moths in cardboard boxes!