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Freight Dogs Finally a forum for those midnight prowler types who utilise the unglamorous parts of airports that many of us never get to see. Freight Dogs is for pilots and crew who operate mostly without SLF.

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Old 3rd Dec 2012, 13:10   #21 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Gt Hockham
Posts: 91
HF... NOT according to Cairns ATC last week:

Out of interest I emailed CNS yesterday, and enquired about her condition, and received this reply from the airport ops manager - "Neil, I would confirm that the Belfast is still at CNS Airport in one piece but is unlikely to ever fly again because of corrosion. Regards Paul" (Neil is an ex- Belfast Pilot).

A sad end then to the old girl, but I don't understand why when she's just had a complete repaint... in grey!
(I have a recent couple of pics but I can't work out how to upload them....)
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Old 3rd Dec 2012, 17:54   #22 (permalink)
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: ME
Posts: 5,043

Apparently taken last month.

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Old 3rd Dec 2012, 21:57   #23 (permalink)
Join Date: May 2005
Location: nocte volant
Posts: 1,121
I suppose the complete repaint would help limit further corrosion. I believe there was an attempt to have the aircraft hosted on a foreign AOC and flying again but that fell through. It really belongs in a museum somewhere warm and dry!
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Old 7th Dec 2012, 10:26   #24 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Gt Hockham
Posts: 91
Thanks, Mutt... that's the pic I was writing about.
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Old 7th Dec 2012, 22:17   #25 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 2,602
I had what must have been the shortest career ever on the Belfast - my dream job that never happened, It might have been as long as four hours.

After some 18mths unemployed the phone rang one Friday afternoon, "Hello, Capt. W*** from Heavylift here, are you still looking for a job?". Given the terse rejection letter I'd had from them some months before this was a bit of a surprise to say the least (They were, to their credit, one of the 10% who had the decency and manners to send rejection letters) so I agreed that I was. The conversation continued on the lines of, could you come in for an interview, what's wrong with now and we don't stand on ceremony here, just come as you are.

Answer; I could, nothing and I did.

The interview was commendably to the point. have you brought your logbook? Ah! Good. Oh yes, (2 second glance) Good. Now, this is how the company works...Can you start monday?

On the way home I bought a bottle of champagne and a big bouquet of flowers for my chick and then went out for a meal that I couldn't afford. On our return feeling on top of the world the light on the answering machine was flashing. Oh hubris! "Capt W*** here, sorry, we made a mistake. We can't take you. Sorry."

I never found out why, probably P & O declined their suggestion of hiring two FOs and only approved one and I was the second.

The idea of tramping around the world below FL100 for weeks at a time was my idea of heaven so naturally I was heartbroken. Soon after I got another job, as d/e captain but with a local airline so dreadfully unsafe I was voluntarily back on the dole after just 3 months and only one crash, preferring that to the risk of dying or losing my licence on a ramp check. How little I knew of the ways of the CAA in those days. And that bunch of villains is still operating.

I wonder to this day where I'd be now if I'd gone down the Belfast route. I certainly wouldn't be where I am today, but I look back at the wonderful job I had for all of four hours, and that wonderful aeroplane with nostalgia.

Sad to see them go.

I later heard of an interview with HL even more brief than mine. The quaking potential FO was primed for a technical quiz and was asked "How many cans of Boddingtons fit into a standard nav bag?" Naturally he had no idea but confidently replied with a semi credible guess and was duly hired.

They don't make them like that anymore, do they?

Last edited by Agaricus bisporus; 7th Dec 2012 at 22:24.
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Old 8th Dec 2012, 13:14   #26 (permalink)
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Essex
Posts: 303
They don't make them like that anymore, do they?
Sadly they don't.

Out of interest what year was this Agaricus bisporus?
W***y was an honourable bloke, and I'm sure was getting jerked about by senior management or HR? I'm sorry you were messed about.

I was lucky enough to work for HLA for over 10 years, not always as a Belfast pilot, and never a more eclectic bunch of characters would you ever hope to meet, learn from, and share a pint with.

Several of the suitably qualified ops lads were taken away on night stop's to be assessed for their performance both on duty, and in the pub. Once successful, they were taken on as FO's on the Belfast.

Long trips away were often begun by the Captain rewriting the company's schedule to ensure an evening meal, a pint, and a hearty breakfast could be had at the appropriate local times (who needs a fatigue management system?)

As first flying job's go, it really would have been hard to better......
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