Photograph of Commander Neville Usborne, RNAS, 1916 (Catalogue reference: AIR 1/2630)

This is a brief guide to help you with your research. Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) records are kept in different places depending on when the officera senior member of staff in the armed forces served. This guide will help you to find out if the information you are looking for exists and, if it does, where to find it.

  • What records can I find at The National Archives at Kew?

    • RNAS officer records held by The National Archives are available online (see above).

  • What records can I find in other archives and organisations?

    • RAF service records after 1920

      Use the GOV.UK website to obtain information about accessing RAF service records after 1920, which are kept by the Ministry of Defence.

Did you know?

The Royal Naval Air Service (RNAS) was founded in July 1914 when the naval wing of the Royal Flying Corps (RFC) was moved out of the RFC and brought under Admiralty control.

On 1 April 1918 the RNAS was merged with the Royal Flying Corps to form the Royal Air Force (RAF).

If an RNAS officera senior member of staff in the armed forces continued to serve in the RAF after April 1918, his record after that date would be kept with the RAF service records.

The service records of officers discharged after 1920 are still kept by the Ministry of Defence.