How to Search the "A Flying History" Photograph Collections

Browsing - manual search

Our aeroplane photograph collections are well organised and can be browsed by choosing "The Collection > Browse" from the menu at the top of our website.  If you want to get a feel for what we have to offer then this is a pretty good way to get started.  Even if you know what you want browsing thousand of aviation photographs isn't as daunting a prospect as it may seem.

How our collections are organised

The Peter Keating collection is organised alphabetically by manufacturer.  If you are after aircraft between Bell and Blackburn then just choose the right box and get exploring.  Would you like photos of British owned Boeing 707s - they have a box all to themselves.

The John Stroud collection is organised by subject each can contains the photos taken at a particular event.  Just choose the event your are interested in.

Targeted search - using queries

For a more specific search you should enter search terms into one of the search boxes on our site.  There is a search box in the top-right corner of each page on  You can also use the search box on the search page.  Choose "The Collection > Search"

What can you search for?

You can search for any combination of the following.


You can search the collection by country.  Use the ISO code such as FR, GB, US or the country's name such as France, United Kingdom or United States.


To limit your search to a particulay year just type it in eg 1963.  To search for photos from a particular decade put an s on the end eg 1940s.  You can search for date ranges by seperating them by a minus sign like this 1953-1957.

Photo References

It is possible to retrieve an individual photograph provided you already know about it.  Just enter our photo reference for example PK104737


Sometimes we apply arbitary tags to our photos in order to create a group or sub-collection of photos.  If you know about such a tag or come across one while searching then just type it in to find all the photos with that tag.  For example RED.

Aircraft Registration Code or Tail-Number

If you are after images of a specific aeroplane try using the tail-number.

The name of an operator

For example Braniff International.

The name of a manufacturer

For example Boeing.

A model of aircraft

For example DC-7.

A variant of aircraft

For example 212B.

An airfield by name or code

For example London Airport, LAP, Heathrow or LHR.

Auto-Complete and Suggestions

Our search watches what you type.  If you are having trouble finding what you want just enter the first few letters and see what is suggested.  Perhaps you are mis-typing or perhaps we use an alternative phrase.

Other ways to search

Once you have some results you can keep searching.