Nestlé has released a rare and previously unseen image this week to mark the 100th anniversary of the creation of the Royal Air Force.
The photograph, taken in June 1918, is one of the earliest photographs of the
RAF. It features a former Nestlé UK employee R. T. Roser and his fellow trainees who have posed in front of a Hertfordshire aircraft hangar and at least four aircraft.
Alex Hutchinson, Nestlé Historian said: “I found the photograph tucked into an album full of pictures of Nestlé employees that had left the company for active service during the First World War. They were from Nestlé factories and warehouses all over the country, but someone in the head office was carefully curating an index of everyone who had gone away so that they could remember them.
One of the saddest things about the collection was seeing ‘KA’ written in red on the back of so many of the photographs. At first I couldn’t work out what it meant, but then I realised it stood for ‘Killed in Action’. “
The photograph is part of a collection of wartime records that had been kept in Nestlé’s UK archive.