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Photo gallery: Atlantic air ship crossing commemorated at Pulham St Mary

12:07 08 October 2012

Pat Whiteside (L to R) Bev Blackburn, Margaret Doggett, Kath Jones and Alan Roper with the commemorative plaque at the Pennoyer Air Ship Dinner from the R34 Air Ship which was the first transatlantic crossing of the type in 1919 which finished the journey at Pulham.

Pat Whiteside (L to R) Bev Blackburn, Margaret Doggett, Kath Jones and Alan Roper with the commemorative plaque at the Pennoyer Air Ship Dinner from the R34 Air Ship which was the first transatlantic crossing of the type in 1919 which finished the journey at Pulham.

Archant

It was the year after the first world war ended, when a loaf of bread cost just three pence and alcohol was prohibited in the USA.

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And on Saturday evening a community group in south Norfolk gathered to remember transatlantic crossing of the air ship R34 which landed in Pulham from New York in 1919.

It was a night of nostalgia and people dressed up to eat, drink and dance at the Pennoyer Centre, in Pulham St Mary.

More than 40 people attended the event, which was the first event of its kind to be held at the centre.

The R34 made the first two-way crossing of the Atlantic in 1919. It took off from near Edinburgh, flew to an airfield outside New York, and then made the return trip, landing at Pulham on July 13. The two-way trip took 7 days 15 hours and 15 minutes.

Guests ate tomato, carrot and lentil soup, road beef and Yorkshire puddings followed by American cheesecake and chocolate fudge - food which was based on the original 1919 menu.

Basil Abbott, curator at Diss Museum gave a speech as the pilot of the R34 and swing band Lena Black and the Uptown Playboys performed.

Nikki Kedge, volunteer special events coordinator at the centre, said: “The evening was brilliant, it was a great success. Everyone enjoyed themselves and the food was excellent.

“Events like these help to keep history alive. It’s about being a community and everyone working together. The whole evening was like brotherhood of man, it fitted together.

“We will definitely hold something like this again.”

A grant from the American Connection at The Forum, Norwich helped cover the costs for the evening.

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