Today my Dad remembers the flying boats, the Walrus and the Sea Otter.
This small machine carried a pilot, a navigator and sometimes a crewman in the goods/passenger part of the hull.
The Otter could land on water subject to wave conditions being favourable. It also had wheels under the hull enabling it to land like a normal aircraft.
It was used for all sorts of jobs and about once a week it collected from mail from Malta.
Despite the wheels the normal arrangement for leaving or returning to the ship the Otter would be brought up from the hangar, lifted by winch over the side and lowered into the water. The reverse process would occur when the plane returned.
One time when the Otter returned there was some concern among the ship’s crew that one of the other crew had developed polio. He had been put in isolation in Ocean’s hospital before being repatriated to England for treatment.