‘Reaching for the Skies’ – photos from Maggie Humphries

Photos from Maggie Humphries (Film Unit).

‘Reaching for the Skies’ was a 12 part documentary series for BBC 2 about the history of aviation, produced at Pebble Mill.  It was transmitted in autumn 1988.  The series was a co-production with CBS TV, John Gau Productions and the BBC.  The producers were Tony Salmon, and Dennis Adams, executive producer: John Gau, series producer: Ivan Rendall, and Anthony Quayle the narrator.  Peter Gower, Gregg Miller and Michael Duxbury edited the series. John Bland cut a small part of episode 1 before Peter Gower took over from him.  Peter cut ‘Pioneers’, ‘Rivals over the Atlantic’, ‘Giants of the Air and ‘The Adventure of Flight’. Because all the Pebble Mill cutting rooms were full, temporary ones were set up at Edgbaston Cricket Ground, along with a production office.  The rooms used at the cricket ground, like Pebble Mill, have since been demolished!

The photos include the F15, from the ‘Fighter’ episode, the Harrier, from ‘Vertical Flight’, the F18, also from ‘Fighter’.  The fourth photo is the P82 Twin Mustang, based on the P51 Mustang (thanks to Paul Hunt for the identification).

The episodes were:

  • Pioneers
  • The Aeroplanes Goes to War
  • Trailbazers
  • Lighter than Air
  • Bombers
  • Quest for Speed
  • Giants of the Air
  • Rivals over the Atlantic
  • Fighters
  • Vertical Flight
  • Victory over the Sea
  • The Adventure of Flight

Harrier: Vertical Flight

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