Imperial War Museum

Joseph R. Boeke (
Fri, 27 Oct 1995 10:36:02 -0400

I was just reading Arch Whitehouse's _The Zeppelin Fighters_ c.1966, and ran
across a reference to the (a) Sopwith Camel in the Imperial War Museum.

He (Whitehouse) stated that the Camel (a 2F.1 I assume) of Lt. Stuart D.
Culley, RNAS was on display at the Imperial War Museum. Does anyone know if
it is still on display there? Lt. Culley, launched from a lighter towed by
the HMS Redoubt, used this machine to bring down LZ.53 on August 11, 1918
(over the Nort Sea). This was the first case of a successful air
interception by a shipborne aircraft.

At any rate, the reason I ask, is that Mr. Whitehouse also mentions that
this machine had its twin Vickers MGs removed in favor of 2 wing mounted
Lewis Guns, which apparently couldn't be re-loaded (interesting in that Lt.
Culley gave up over 1000 rounds of ammunition to mak this change). I would
like to confirm this (if possible).

Additionally, does anyone know if the machine is preserved as it was in
August 1918, or has been restored to a "regular" Camel? If possible, I
would like to contact the IWM and see if they have any photographs of the
machine avialable. Does anyone have the address to the museum?

I am very interested in learning more about Lt. Culley's mission, so if
anyone knows of any articles on him or the mission, I would be most
appreciative of some references.

As always, thank you.

- Joe

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