Sir Thomas Octave Murdoch Sopwith (January 18, 1888 – January 27, 1989) was an aviation pioneer who set up a factory near the east end of the road. Originally based at Brooklands in Surrey he moved to Kingston upon Thames in December 1912 to fulfil orders for the British Army. The company produced more than 18,000 World War I aircraft for the allied forces, including 5,747 of the Sopwith Camel single-seat fighter. Sopwith was awarded the CBE in 1918. After the war the firm went bankrupt due to punitive anti-profiteering taxes.
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