William Farren's Flying Boat CE1

There was an increased submarine menace in January 1917 as Germany resumed submarine warfare following a brief suspension of such activity at the world wide outrage at the sinking of the Lusitania. Farren saw the potential of a flying boat and pressed for the opportunity for Farnborough to design and build one. This permission was granted and, without delay, in June that year, Farren set about designing and building the CE1 (Coastal Experimental 1). Intensive work followed and, incredibly, by the end of the year the plane was almost ready to fly. In January 1918 it took to the air under the control of its intrepid, 25 year old designer, William Farren himself. Over the next month, as test pilot, he made many flights from Southampton Water. Two prototypes were built but sadly, the plane never want into production as the war ended and an alternative design was favoured.

See Page 4 of the relevant Farnborough Air Service Trust briefing for a reference to Farren and the CE1.

Below is a collection of Farren's own photos of the CE1, an Article by Paul R Hare and Wikipedia's description of the CE1.

William Farren - Between the Wars

William Farren - 1939 - 1945

William Farren - The Vulcan Years



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