Motto:Per Ardua ad Astra (Through Adversity to the Stars)
The Royal Flying Corps (RFC) was formed by Royal Warrant on 13 April 1912 and assumed control of the Air Battalion of the Royal Engineers on 13 May 1912. It was comprised of a Military Wing, a Naval Wing, a Reserve, the Central Flying School at Upavon and the Royal Aircraft Factory at Farnborough. Following the Military Aeroplane Competition at Larkhill, Wiltshire in August 1912, the B.E.2 was selected for use by the Royal Flying Corps. By the end of 1912, the RFC was equipped with 1 airship, 12 manned kite balloons and 36 unarmed biplanes.
The London Gazette, 10 July 1915
"I have once more to call your Lordship's attention to the part taken by the Royal Flying Corps in the general progress of the campaign, and I wish particularly to mention the invaluable assistance they rendered in the operations described in this report, under the able direction of Major-General Sir David Henderson.
The Royal Flying Corps is becoming more and more an indispensable factor in combined operations. In co-operation with the artillery, in particular, there has been continuous improvement both in the methods and in the technical material employed. The ingenuity and technical skill displayed by the officers of the Royal Flying Corps, in effecting this improvement, have been most marked.
Since my last despatch there has been a considerable increase both in the number and in the activity of German aeroplanes in our front. During this period there have been more than sixty combats in the air, in which not one British aeroplane has been lost. As these fights take place almost invariably over or behind the German lines, only one hostile aeroplane has been brought down in our territory. Five more, however, have been definitely wrecked behind their own lines, and many have been chased down and forced to land in most unsuitable ground." J. D. P. French, Field-Marshal, Commanding-in-Chief, The British Army in France