On a Cushion of Air The Story of Hoverlloyd and the Cross-Channel Hovercraft

by Robin Paine, Roger Syms

On a Cushion of Air The Story of Hoverlloyd and the Cross-Channel Hovercraft Synopsis

This is the story of how private foreign enterprise in the form of Swedish Lloyd and Swedish America Line, who formed a British company called 'Hoverlloyd', galvanised the British Government in to supporting this new concept in transport through the formation of a British Rail subsidiary called 'Seaspeed'. It is a story, told by those who were there, of how young adventurous men and women, most of whom were in their twenties and early thirties, took on the exciting challenge of getting an operation, in which they all believed had a great future, off the ground. It tells of the difficulties and near disasters, through lack of experience, that nearly wrote off the industry in the early days; the clashes of cultures between the free enterprise and Government operations; and why, after so much early promise, the great adventure with the giant car and passenger carrying hovercraft came to an end. The story begins with the history of Saunders Roe and their involvement as a result of the discovery by Christopher Cockerell in 1953 that big weights could be supported on a cushion of low pressure air and that the concept could be practically applied. Much has already been written about Christopher Cockerell, later Sir Christopher, and the development of the hovercraft by Saunders Roe, as well as the hovercraft industry to the present day. Those relevant parts showing the frustrations and disappointments they too suffered are repeated in this book, together with new material that has come to light, to provide a comprehensive narrative of the hovercraft industry and the giant SR.N4 cross-Channel operations.

Book Information

ISBN: 9780956897800
Publication date: 1st May 2012
Author: Robin Paine, Roger Syms
Publisher: Robin Paine and Roger Syms
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 700 pages
Categories: Transport: general interest, Manufacturing industries,

About Robin Paine, Roger Syms

ABOUT AUTHORS Robin Paine was born in the USA in 1942 and went to prep school in Tonbridge, before entering the Nautical College Pangbourne, following which he joined the British India Steam Navigation Company in 1959 as a cadet serving in cargo and passenger ships to India, Ceylon, the Persian Gulf, East Africa, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand. After nearly six years with the company he joined Cunard with a First Mate's Certificate as Second Officer on the trans-Atlantic cargo ships, one of which lost its rudder in a storm 600 miles from Newfoundland resulting in an SOS and a seventeen ...

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