Fight for yor Right!
14 January 2007
Reaction score
Hi all,

the most of you knows the real aircraft of Port Victoria like the P.V.2/5/7/8/9. Can anyone of you help with drawings and technical data for the aircraft projects of Port Victoria. I need help with P.V. 1, P.V. 3, P.V. 4 and P.V.6.
I believe the "Grain Griffon" was the P.V.10, is this correct?

Thanks all

Servus Maveric

The last of Port Victoria aircraft was PV.9 fighter.

The PV.1 was a Sopwith Baby fuselage with modified wings and
enlarge floats.
The P.V.3 was to be a land-based two-seat fighter, design work began in early 1916. Source 'The Complete Book of Fighters' by Green and Swanborough published by Salamander.

The seaplane version of the P.V.3 became the P.V.4 powered by a 110hp Clerget in place of the intneded 150hp Smith "Static" radial engine. Gunner in the nose had a Lewis, it was a sesquiplane of the pod and boom configuration. CG problems forced its abandonment. Source as above.

thank for your answers, but had nobody a drawing?
Sorry hesham, but I´m sure, the last build aircraft by Port Victoria was the Grain Griffon.

Servus Maveric

Grain Griffon was not the last,and the PV.9 fighter
floatplane was the last.
Hi Maveric,

May be you are right,the PV.9 was not the last,I discovered that,
and for PV.9 I will explain it in airwarfareforum site.
Okay found an article on the Port Victoria planes in Air Enthusiast #43 and it has the pictures and drawings of series of aircraft. Will have to get my scanner set up.

PV.5 came in two types the PV.5 and PV.5A. The PV.5A differed from the PV.5 by being fitted with a 200hp Hispano Suiza. It had a higher rate of speed and much better climb rate over the PV.5

The PV.6 was a high-speed, single seater landplane figter. It was not built.

The Grain Griffons did not given the designation of PV.10. There were 7 of them. They were the frames of Sopwith B.1s. They were converted to two-seat reconnaissance aircraft with folding wings and wireless sets. They were all different. Two were powered by 230hp Bentley BR.2s and the rest by 200hp Sunbeam Arabs. Three were sent on the HMS Vindictive in 1919 for use against Bolshevik forces.
P.V.7 Grain Kitten and P.V.8 Eastchurch Kitten
A fighter program for the Royal Navy's Arsenals

At the end of 1916, the Admiralty had acquired a certain experience in the use of landplanes from shipbased platforms, and therefore condisered operational use of lightweight fighters capable of taking off from small-size platforms fitted to the forward turret of its destroyers. The idea was to multiply the number of offshore aircraft capable of intercepting German dirigibles.

The Marine Experimental Aircraft Depot at Port Victoria, on Grain Island, et the experimental division of the Royal Naval Air Service at Eastchurch, were both commissioned to submit a prototype each. The two aircraft were to be powered by the same 45 hp geared ABC Gnat engine and fitted with a single 7.7 mm Lewis machine gun above the upper wing.

Designed by W.H. Sayers, the P.V.7 (serial N539) was developed at Port Victoria, on the banks of the Medway river. It was a small sesquiplane, with identical wing profile to the previous aircraft built there, having ailerons only on the upper plane. On March 1917, while the P.V.7 was still under construction at Port Victoria, Sqdn Cmdr Harry Busteed, who headed the experimental division at Eastchurch, was transfered to Grain Island to take the commandment of the Depot. He took with him G.H. Millar, the technical supervisor of the Eastchurch branch, and the partly completed prototype he had designed there.

Millar's prototype was an aircraft of classical lines but diminutive size, a biplane with staggered wings of equal length (the upper wing having marked dihedral), separated by deep masts on either side. The aircraft was equipped with ailerons on both planes, and the airframe was strengthened by wires connecting the upper plane with the wheeltrain's axle. The horizontal tail was a single mobile surface that was aerodynamically compensated.

The prototype was completed on the Medway's banks under the designation P.V.8 (serial N540) and was christened the Eastchurch Kitten, while the P.V.7 became the Grain Kitten. The P.V.7 made its first flight on June 22, 1917, with an ungeared 35 hp ABC Gnat engine, since the planned engine was not available. As it was not very maneuverable in flight and on the ground, and because of its unpredictable engine, the P.V.7 was initially confined to flights in the immediate vicinity of the airfield. As to the P.V.8, it first flew on September 1917, also powered by the same ungeared 35 hp Gnat engine as its competitor.

From the onset, the P.V.8 proved superior to the P.V.7, which confirmed, not only the bad choice made in the profile, but also that the sesquiplane formula of the P.V.7 was not adapted to aircraft with small engine power. A new wing with conventional profile was therefore built for the P.V.7. The empennage and landing gear were also modified to take into account the results obtained during the first test flights. Eventually, however, it was decided not to fly the modified aircraft because of the engine's recurring troubles. The P.V.7 was therefore never tested in its new configuration.

Despite its qualities, the P.V.8 suffered from a lack of stability. It was therefore fitted with a fixed stabilizer and new elevator control before its second flight on September 26. In this new configuration, it was now judged highly superior to the P.V.7. Not only it offered the pilot great visibility, but it was also quite maneuverable. Still, it seemed to fragile for extensive military work, and was particularly handicapped by its feeble, whimsical engine.

The P.V.8 was briefly evaluated at the Martlesham Heath test facilities between October 19 and November 9, 1917. However, the Admiralty abandoned the program and decided on a carrier-based version of the Sopwith Camel. Moreover, the Zeppelin airships had made way for the large Gotha or Zeppelin-Staaken bombers, for which the tiny Kitten would have been no match.

On March 13, it was decided to crate the P.V.8 and ship it to the United States for evaluation. It was probably planned to be compared with Captain James V. Martin's K.III of similar configuration. However, all trace of the P.V.8 was lost after March 30, and there is no indication that it ever reached America.

Translated/adapted by Stéphane Beaumort from Les chasseurs de poche de Grain Island, by Jean-Louis Bléneau


  • PV.7.jpg
    260.7 KB · Views: 265
  • PV.7 side view.jpg
    PV.7 side view.jpg
    105.1 KB · Views: 243
  • PV.7 in hangar.jpg
    PV.7 in hangar.jpg
    130 KB · Views: 221
  • PV.7 three-view.gif
    PV.7 three-view.gif
    47.3 KB · Views: 216
  • PV.8.jpg
    123 KB · Views: 212
  • PV.8 side view.jpg
    PV.8 side view.jpg
    290.6 KB · Views: 50
  • PV.8 three-view.gif
    PV.8 three-view.gif
    42.8 KB · Views: 56
  • PV.7 and PV.8 specs.gif
    PV.7 and PV.8 specs.gif
    15 KB · Views: 48

here is a Port Victoria P.V.4.

The Complete Book of Fighters


  • 2.png
    372 KB · Views: 54
  • 1.png
    495.4 KB · Views: 52
I believe the "Grain Griffon" was the P.V.10, is this correct?
I have seen that in print as well. Be that as it may, here are some images of the Griffon, found in my files. I believe that the image of the aircraft on HMS Vindictive is the one that was used alongside Camel's in Latvia during the 1919 Allied intervention in the Baltic.


  • 218-4.jpg
    29.2 KB · Views: 15
  • flying-off-deck-hms-vindictive-1919ft.jpg
    32 KB · Views: 17
  • graingriffin1blg.jpg
    27.5 KB · Views: 17
  • graingriffin2blg.jpg
    29.4 KB · Views: 18
  • graingriffin3blg.jpg
    28.7 KB · Views: 17
Last edited:

Similar threads

Top Bottom