Designed by a Frenchman, Henri Mignet, in 1934, the Flying Flea could be built at home and cost £90 (about £5000 today). A total of 123 were completed in Britain, but scores more were never finished. Most were fitted with the tiny 25 hp Scott or Douglas engine. Maximum speed was a sedate 56mph.
Sadly, after many fatalities caused by a serious design fault, it became illegal to fly unmodified Flying Fleas after June 1937.
Born of the Golden Age of flying in the inter-war years, the Flying Flea had a short life, but during this time the little aircraft sparked a craze that had enthusiasts all over Great Britain and France in its grip.
The Museum’s Mignet HM.14 Pou-du-Ciel ‘Flying Flea’ was made from the original plans and is fitted with a Scott A.2S ‘Flying Squirrel’ engine, made in Shipley.