Sir Charles Wakefield and Mr. Cobham's Flight.
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SIR Charles Cheers Wakefield, Bt., C.B.E., governing director of the firm of C. C. Wakefield and Co., Ltd., manufacturers of the Castrol motor oils, is well known for his close interest in aviation. Born in Liverpool, he has for many years lived in London, and has for more than twenty years been a member of the Corporation of the City of London. Re served the highest office in the civic world, that of Lord Mayor of London, in the year 1915-16, which coincided with one of the darkest years of the war. During his year of office he visited the western front, the Belgian Army headquarters, and was also the guest of Admiral Lord Yellicoe on a visit he paid to the. Grand Fleet. He succeeded' in raising large sums ler war charities, particularly the British Red Cross and the Kitchener Memorial Fund, and was also responsible for the first recruiting campaign for which the Mansion House ever
served as headquarters, which was a great success.
Provincial Lord Mayors and Mayors" followed his example, and he waa officially thanked for his work.
Sir Charles had previously, in 1907-8, served the office of Sheriff of the e City, for which he was knighted in 1908, and became alderman of his ward in the same year. In recognition of his civic services he was created a baronet in 1917, and in 1919 he was decorated. a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, military section. He holds many foreign Orders, the most recent of which is the Order of the White Lion of Czecho Slovakia, given in recognition of the interest he has taken in the new republic since he attended its first Festival of Freedom
at Prague in 1920 at the head of a civic deputation from London.
He has taken a prominent part in the movement for the promotion of AngloAmerican friendship, in connection with which he visited the -United States in 1922 as the head of a British delegation, visiting many towns and cities and receiving the honour of the LL.D. degree of one of the great modern universities.
Subsequently he embodied his views and experiences in a book (" America To-day and To-morrow ") , which also included a study of Henry Ford and "Fordisin " which attracted some attention at the time.
He was one of those who gathered together at the historic dinner given to M. Bleriot upon his crossing the Channel by air, but his interest in aviation dates from even before that, In 1910 he spoke at a meeting in the City of London held to urge the vital importance of Imperial air, defence, and in the course of his speech emphasized the great part which aerial attack and defence would certainly play in any future war. His admiration for the chivalry and daring of our airmen during the war he has frequently expressed. Since the war he has maintained his active propaganda on behalf of British aviation. Ho presided over the first lecture given by the late Sir Ross Smith, after the great kr-r7,6-71'27---"--`1 flight to Australia made by
him and his brother, _ and hhs co-operated in one way or another with most of the great long-distance flights that have since been completed, and particularly with those undertaken by Mr. Alan Cobham. It is in recognition of the assistance he has given that Mr. Cobham's most recent and greatest achieveinent has been entitled, "The Sir Charles • Wakefield Flight to Australia and Back." He has been present at roost of the light aeroplane trials at Lympne, and, with Mr. Cob ham and Captain Broad as his pilots, Las twice won the King's Cu-p air trophy.
Sir Charles is keenly interested in the future of motoring, and is, of course, a member of the great trade societies.