IN June, 1965, Swedish Lloyd and Swedish American Line gave the hovercraft industry the boost it so desperately needed by having the courage to order not one but two SR.N4 hovercraft to operate a cross‐Channel service starting in 1968. For the previous two years both Vickers and Westlands had tried to interest British companies in this new form of transport. There was even talk of a grant issued through the NRDC to encourage would‐be operators. Such an operation was to be known as Operation Shop Window, and its purpose was to demonstrate to the world the potential of hovercraft travel and the undoubted lead that Britain had in this field. However, it was the Swedes who, true to their adventurous seafaring tradition, took up the challenge, and it was indeed a challenge for at that time the fund of hovercraft knowledge, particularly in the commercial field, was not as great as it is today.
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