23rd Nov 2008, 10:15
Well as always, perfect British weather for sitting reading the books, or browsing the internet. Anyway I'm doing a bit of research into UK airlines of the 1930s but theres a couple i seemingly can't find too much info about.
Western Airways Ltd. - possibly based weston super mare - but not confirmed.
Southern Airways Ltd at Ramsgate. Found some info about them flying Ipswich to Ilford in a copy of flight from 1939
If anyone has any info or even photos about either of these airlines from the 1930s, I'd love to see them.
In summer 1939 Southern Airways had two Short Scion (G-ADDV and 'DX) and a DH.84 Dragon (G-AECZ). The Dragon was based at Ramsgate, and the two Scions at Ipswich and Plymouth. Appears to have been a joyriding organisation.
Western Airways were based at Weston-super-Mare. Quite a big fleet of nine aircraft. 4 DH.84 Dragons (G-ACAO, 'JT, 'MJ, 'PX), 4 DH.89 Rapides (G-ACTU, ADBV, 'ADDD, AFSO) and one big 4-engined DH.86 Express G-AETM.
Western had quite a scheduled operation by 1939. Every 30 minutes, all day, every day, from Weston to Cardiff (using the DH.86 among others). 5 round trips a day Bristol (Whitchurch)-Cardiff-Swansea. 3 trips Swansea to Barnstaple, one of which extended to Newquay and Penzance, and 3 trips a day Weston-Bristol-Birmingham-Manchester. These schedules, all of them daily, seem to require a minimum of 6 aircraft to operate them. They also did joyriding and charters out of Manchester.
Western continued into the 1950s operating out of Weston-s-M, gradually moving into light aircraft
Information above from several places, including Tony Merton-Jones' "British Indendent Airlines from 1946" (which has a page on Western), and a summer 1939 "ABC Rail Guide", which has all the UK airline timetables in it as well.
23rd Nov 2008, 12:14
Awesome thank you very much that gives me some more to work on.....
Both Western and Southern were owned by the Straight Corporation, which also owned a number of other civil aviation investments in the 1930s. There's also a page on Western (including timetable page shots), and a mention of Southern, in Davies' book "British Airways The Imperial Years".
23rd Nov 2008, 12:55
More for you from "British Independant Airlines since 1946" hope you can read these scanned photo's ??? Keith.
23rd Nov 2008, 13:15
Fantastic what a shame the DH86 doesn't exist anymore, looks like owning a British Airline was the "in" thing in the 30s. thank you gentleman your help has been much appreciated.
The chap who owned both airlines :
Whitney Straight - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whitney_Straight)
See how he went on to head up BOAC and then Rolls-Royce. Not a bad aviation track record.
23rd Nov 2008, 17:45
And he had ann aircraft named after him!
23rd Nov 2008, 19:26
Which I do believe has just been rebuilt over a period of nealry half my lifespan! looks good though!