HISTORICAL INTEREST

ANOTHER AVIATOR TO LAND ON THE LAGOON

Vice-Admiral Sir Edward Ratcliffe Garth Russel Evans was C-in-C. of the Cape Station; commonly known as ‘Evans of the Broke’, having served in the Dover Patrol on HMS Broke and rammed a German ship that was attacking Dover at the time. E.R.G.R. as he was affectionately known, came to Knysna on a few occasions; the first by seaplane on 15th May 1934 during the visit of HMS Milford. The weather was threatening, but didn’t put the man off, landing at 4pm. He was taken onboard by a tender from HMS Milford and later delivered a slide presentation on the Dover Patrol in the local cinema.

 

This picture belonging to Mrs Fraser has an inscription on the back as follows:

Seaplane landing on knysna lagoon
Seaplane photo description
Walter Duthie invited Evans on a buckshot at Brenton as was the custom. He visited Knysna again later that year on board H.M.S. Weston and on another occasion in 1935 on the Rochester. His son was ill, delaying his departure from Simonstown. This time he gave an ill-tempered lecture entitled “With Scott’s Last Expedition”, apparently swearing at his assistant who placed some slides upside down. After apologising, he put it down to worry over his son’s poor health.
Evans then returned to Cape Town from Port Elizabeth; flying over Knysna he dropped a weighted streamer onto the Brenton homestead.
The message read: “Little Broke much better, temperature normal. We send you our love and kisses and please pat the buck who escaped our fusilage.”
More detail can be found in the book “Knysna, The Forgotten Port” by M.Parkes and V.Williams