Eastern crescent
in Air empire
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Imperial Airways developed a sense of entitlement on the air route east from Europe to India and beyond. The French used nine airports provided at British expense, and the Dutch used eleven; the British used only one French and no Dutch facility. Grudges about inter-airline dues and obligations would also have reflected the stresses of establishing Britain's eastern airway. Britain's prime anxiety about air services in and across India arose out of a concern for efficient, regular Empire service. While British plans for aviation through India to Australia were still inchoate, the Dutch offered to operate a temporary trans-India airmail only service between England and Australia as from October 1932. The opening of scheduled mail and passenger services by air to and from Australia in the mid-1930s was a tale of intricate bargaining, compromise and intrigue.

Air empire

British imperial civil aviation, 1919–39


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