Founded at Bristol, Somerset, in February 1910 as British
& Colonial Aeroplane Company Ltd. First began construction
of a number of biplanes under license from Societe
Zodiac, but these
were not completed because the
sample aircraft received from France could not be induced
to take to the air. First aircraft produced were Bristol
biplanes, usually known as the Boxkite, which initially were
little more than copies of the Henry Farman biplane. Flying
schools established at Larkhill, on Salisbury Plain,
Brooklands, Surrey, 1911. February 1911 Deutsche Bristol-
Werke established at Halberstadt, Germany, to operate
a flying school and build Bristol airplanes; arrangement
canceled June 23,1914. First military aircraft were monoplanes
designed by Henri Coanda; No. 105 shared third
place with a Deperdussin in the Military Aeroplane Competition
of 1912. Bristol
Scout, or "Baby Biplane", evolved
by Frank Barnwell 1914. The two-seat Bristol Fighter
entered service in 1917 and became regarded as the best
general-purpose combat aircraft of the First World War.
Between the wars Bristol Bulldog biplanes had equipped
nine RAF Squadrons by 1932 and were most widely used
1936. Bristol Type 138A of 1936 captured
world altitude record in September, 1936, then regained
it from Italy in June 1937 with an altitude of 16,440m. Bristol Type 142, built as executive aircraft
for Lord Rothermere, became the military Blenheim, an important light bomber in the early Second
period. Beaufighter, first flown July 1939, became RAF's
first nightfighter, subsequently an important antishipping
aircraft armed with rockets, torpedoes, and bombs.
Designed and built prototype of eight-engined 100-
passenger Brabazon I, first flew September 4,1949;
scrapped 1953 for financial/political/technical reasons.
Type 170 Freighter first flown December 2,1945 and 213
Turboprop powered Britannia first flew
August 16,1952, made the first non-stop airliner flight
London, Vancouver (8,208km), June
29,1957, and first North Atlantic passenger service to be
flown by a turbine-powered airliner on December 19 of
the same year. Rotary-wing development resulted from
formation of a helicopter department in 1944; initial flight
Bristol Type 171 "Sycamore"
Bristol Type 171 prototype made July 27,1947. Subsequently
produced as Sycamore, entering service with
RAF as its first British-designed helicopter in 1952.
Research and development ot the tandem-rotor helicopters
resulted in Type 192 Belvedere, but by the time this entered
service with the RAF, in 1961, Bristol's helicopter department
Bristol Type 192 "Belvedere"
the Bristol Helicopter Division of Westland
Aircraft Ltd. Company's aircraft activities reorganized
as Bristol Aircraft Ltd. in January 1956, wholly owned by
Bristol Aeroplane Company Ltd. This company was
absorbed into the British Aircraft Corporation (BAC)
in June 1960. Following the acquisition of the Cosmos
Engineering Company in 1920, the Bristol Company was
also a major builder of aero engines.