1933: First flight over Everest

On April 3, 1933 the Houston Mount Everest Expedition completed the first successful flight over Everest. The Times, in agreement with the expedition’s sponsors, secured exclusive rights to syndicate all news and photographs of the historic flight to the world’s media. Today, as part of Explore Your Archives 2016 we’re celebrating #archivepioneers and have delved into our archives to share a few pictures of this aviation first.

Expedition shot of Everest from the south with a close-up of Chamland and Lhotse in the distance, April 1933.
Expedition leader Peregrine Fellowes discussing the weather conditions with Mr S. Gupta, meteorological office at Purnea, on the morning of the flight.
The Houston aircraft being refuelled at Purnea, the expedition’s base, north of Calcutta in India, April 1933. The Houston was one of two Westland aircraft which took part in the expedition.
The Houston aircraft being placed ready for flight, April 1933.
Chief pilot Lord Clydesdale and Colonel Stewart Blacker, observer and photographer, just before take-off, April 3, 1933. The second aircraft, a Westland Wallace, was piloted by Flight Lieutenant David McIntyre with Mr R.S.Bonnett, aerial photographer for the Gaumont-British Film Corporation, on board.
The Houston aircraft on the south side of the Everest range, April 3, 1933.
One of the two Williamson P14 cameras purchased by The Times and used during the expedition to take oblique photographs of Mount Everest and the Himalayas. This camera survives in our archives today.

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