Saturday, 31 December 2011

Luton Visitors

Welcome, as its christmas and today's selection are from various era's you can choose your own mode of transport and camera today.

First up today is French Navy C47  84-2. French Navy C47s were regular visitors to Luton during the 1970's.

Long time resident of the Graveyard and possibly the only Boeing 720 to be stolen is the ex Aero America Boeing 720  N7522A.  As the story goes, after failing to find a buyer and accumulating a huge amount in parking fees the Boeing was sold for scrap to offset some of the money, and moved to the engine run bay. One saturday  a couple of large trucks and a JCB turned up and said they had come to cut up the 720, and were duly escorted out to the run up bay no questions asked . Over the saturday and sunday they did an amazingly quick job of cutting and removing the aircraft. Monday morning  came and another set of trucks  arrived asking where their Beoing 720 was so they could cut it up ! Red faces all round at Airport Security.

Seen during the final summer of Comet operations by Dan Air is the ex RAF G-BDIT.

Its July 1981 and seen a long way from home is Corvette VH-MEI.

Another short lived operation under the Skyways banner was Skyways Air Cargo FH227 G-SKYA.

Wondering where the sunshine went on a typical wet and cold day at Luton is Air Florida Boeing 737 N37AF about to start its summer lease to Britannia Airways.

And so as Roger and Reggie disappear in a cloud of dust around the perimeter road we say Happy New  Year and look forward to seeing you again in 2012.

All photo's available as 6" x 4" prints. Please email for details.

Number 10 in a Never Ending Series

Monday, 26 December 2011

RAF Britannia's at Luton

Welcome, once again we burn rubber in the Mini Van as we head up the hill to Luton Airport, today we are looking at Bristol Britannia's in RAF markings.

RAF Britannia's were regular visitors to Luton during the early 70's operating trooping flights to and from Germany. Luton had a joint services trooping centre based there, as Britannia Airways were operating 20 - 30 trooping flights per week during this period. Here we see XL637 taxying in.

 XL660 arriving in June 1976.

XM491 receiving attention from the Monarch engineers in September 1975.

XM520 wearing a roughly daubed 9G-ACE awaiting conversion to civilian status for Geminair.

XM404 being towed to the graveyard for cutting up after removal of all useful spare parts in November 1976.

Its going to be a chilly ride home as by November of 1976 we had swapped the luxury of the Mini Van for the wind in the hair thrill of the MG Midget so you are going to have to sit on the boot lid to get home. Till next time.

All photo's available as 6" x 4" prints, please email for details.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Back to Luton 1976

Welcome, there is plenty of room in the back of the Mini Van, check you have enough film for the Zenith B, and we will roll back the years to 1976 as we head off to Luton Airport.

Its march and we see Britannia 9Q-CAJ belonging to A.M.A.Z. taxying out. One of a number of small cargo airlines that emerged when the RAF demobbed the Britannia 253 fleet.

A regular visitor around this time was Barvaria's BAC 1-11 D-AMUC.

Bringing in fans for the Rugby international is Air Alpes F27 F-BYAB.

Dan Air's ill fated HS748 G-ASPL, lost some years later when the passenger door came off in flight and wrapped itself around the tailplane.

Parked on the light aircraft stand is HS125-1B/R G-ATWH belonging to GKN this is an unusual HS125 series 1 having been modified with the long range ventral fuel tank which first appeared on the series 3.  We also catch a fleeting glimpse of the legendary Mini Van.

A rare sight at Luton is Saturn's L100 N10ST one of a number of visits in early 1976 to move the  Courtline stock of Tristar spares to the USA. You may have noticed the aircraft is banking to the right whilst taxying, this is due to fuel pump failure in the starboard outer tanks leading to a fuel imbalance.

So as the Mini Van achieves V2 along the perimeter road we say goodbye to Roger and Reggie till next time.

All photo's are available to purchase as 6" x 4" prints to UK addresses, please email for details.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Redcoat Air Cargo

Welcome, you are just in time to jump into the Vauxhall Chevette as today we are off to Luton in the twilight of the Bristol Britannia to look at the the Redcoat fleet.

First up is G-AOVS as it whispers its way past to the Redcoat hangar.

Here we see G-AOVS making its final journey from behind the old Courtline hangar to the airport fire station where it ended  its days  as the Airport Fire Service Smoke rescue trainer.

The former Eurafric Britannia EI-BCI now G-BHAU  bought as replacement for the ill fated G-BRAC.

The ill fated G-BRAC victim of tailplane icing over Boston in happier days seen when it was a TV star painted in Redair titles for the BBC TV series Airline. After alpha charlie crashed  G-BHAU was used in some scenes for the series but was always filmed close up or head on so the red tail wasn't visible.

CL44 G-BRED was the final nail in the Redcoat coffin, when echo delta arrived back at Luton on 3 engines their spare Tyne engine was with Rolls Royce after being overhauled,  but they didn't have enough money in the kitty to pay for the repairs and Rolls Royce wouldn't let it go without payment so they ceased operations.

So as the Chevette disappears into the distance round the perimeter road we say goodbye to Roger and Reggie till next time.

Number 8 In a Never Ending Series

Friday, 2 December 2011

Greenham Common 1979

Welcome viewers, its 1979 and we are off to the heyday of  the International Air Tattoo at the much missed RAF Greenham Common. Its going to be a squeeze as we are in the MG Midget today so we will have to take the roof off so you can sit on the boot lid as we head south down the A34.

As we walk along the mile of parked aircraft we find an A7 Corsair of VA66 from the USS Dwight Eisenhower.

Landing after its display is Atlantic 61+16 of the German Navy

One of the rarely seen visitors is BAC 1-11 XX105 of the Royal Aircraft Establishment.

Another unusual visitor on this side of the pond is US Coastguard C130 1602

Nearing the end of its service life, and showing its Britannia ancestry around the tail is Canadair Argus 735 of the RCAF.

Even further away from home is Canberra B2 1233 of the Argentine Air Force

And finally we see Fiat G91 32+80 of the Luftwaffe

And so as the Midget disappears  into the sunset back up the A34 we say goodbye to Roger and Reggie till next time.