According to Wikipedia, The Hawk was the fourth flying machine that British inventor Percy Pilcher built in the 1890s. Following Bat, Beetle, and Gull hang gliders, Pilcher’s Hawk broke the world distance record in 1897 for flying unpowered: 250 meters (820 feet). That glider is being restored and will be on display in 2016 thanks to the National Museum of Scotland.
Could Percy Sinclair Pilcher have been the first person ever to fly? Four years before the Wright brothers conquered the skies, Pilcher devised a powered flying machine and intended to demonstrate it to the world. But it was never to be…. In this episode, Louise Innes introduces us to one of the great Victorian aviators and explores how we’re looking after the oldest surviving aircraft in Britain.