Anne Logie, Historic Environment Volunteer, writes:

After reading the 'Flying Down To Rio' blog about the Graf Zeppelin's visit to the London Air Park, Tony Hancke sent us these pictures from his family archive. The Hancke family owned Myrtle Nursery in Hampton, and the first picture (below), which was taken by Mr Hancke’s father, Frank Lewis Hancke, is a view of the Zeppelin as seen from the nursery. 

The picture below was taken from 97 Uxbridge Road, Hampton Hill, by one of Mr Hancke’s uncles. The woman on the right of the picture is Mr Hancke’s great grandmother. I particularly like this picture: the leafy street with people coming out of their houses to see the great airship as it passes overhead.  Most of the pictures we see of the Graf Zeppelin are taken from the air, or are part of news reporting.  This image is pleasingly domestic, and probably represents the view that most people would have had. It's also interesting to see what that part of Uxbridge Road looked like in the 1930s.

Mr Hancke’s father took the following pictures (below) when he went to see the Graf Zeppelin at the London Air Park.  As with the Uxbridge Road picture, this first picture gives a less common view of the ship, showing clearly the fitting of the gondola and external motors.

Although at small scale it is difficult to see, in this image (below) from the London Air Park the men in white are in approximately the middle distance, and the darkness around the bottom of the Zeppelin’s gondola is in fact a crowd of people.

We are grateful to Mr Hancke for sending us his family's pictures, and allowing us to use them on our website. 

Text and images copyright Environment Trust unless otherwise stated. No re-use without express consent.