I too was puzzled by the photo sent to me. I was fully expecting it to be one of the 206s. I can confirm it is definitely at the Clyde Heliport, as attested to by Tarman.
As this was taken in 1988, my father can't be sure this was the actual helicopter, but he assures me that there were two pilots and six passengers on board for the flight.
It was around the time of the Glasgow Garden Festival which was staged on the river bank opposite the Heliport. The flight was a gift - my brother and I each got to choose what we most wanted (at that time!). Aged 7, I choose to go on the Coca-Cola Roller Coaster...
My brother chose the flight. Not only was I a little disgruntled that he'd had the foresight and imagination to choose a better adventure than me, I never actually made it onto the roller coaster - the day I was due to go I injured my thumb in a car door!
Perhaps missing out on flying at that tender age worked on me subconsciously, as now 22yr later I'm the one flying helicopters!
a good selection of what Clyde had, and photo's of the Late Great Captain George Muir are on my flickr site, www.flickr.com/photos/wiganairways/, and view the Clyde Helicopter set, also a photo of Joe McGachy pulling out LR G-STVI onto the pad, also one time Castle Air pilot Geoff Newman flying JR G-BOUY and John Mulvaney about to lift off in Bo105 G-BFYA, going back to Cardiff after being the Police chopper for the first year, before G-SPOL was delivered, more visitors to the helipad was a 365 G-POAV - I think that is the reg. -, and Army Gazzelle's used to pop in, as well as Bond 365's.
As this is my first post let me start by saying hello. I have been a member here for a while, but have never contributed, feeling it's not really my place to. I am not a pilot, but since a child I have been compelled to gaze skyward whenever I heard the sound of rotors cutting through the air, and this magic has never really left me. However, as this is a post about nostalgia I feel that I can share my memories.
I grew up and still live in Chester in the north west of England and most of the time, as a boy, when I looked up to see who was flying by it was usually what I know now to be G-TALLY, or another star of this thread G-JLBI. It was John Broomes craft that I saw most often as it must have visited somewhere near to our house on a reasonably regular basis, I would suppose at weekends. One of the two girls who lived in the house opposite to ours was at school with John Broomes children and I remember being extremely jealous when she was one of a very select few invited to a birthday party, at where else but Alton Towers, chauffeured of course in G-JLBI.
It was TALY that I remember liking best tho, a real beauty, and I really do remember not seeing her for a long time and wondering to myself if she had been replaced by the squirrel that would occasionally fly past. That squirrel never really did have the same appeal to me. Now I know that must have been TALI.
Thanks for all the great photos in this thread. I just love the original paint jobs and the skids with emergency pop outs on those old 206s and for me they have never looked better.
I will end my trip down memory lane with a couple of photos. Firstly G-JLBI, I know not where or when. Secondly, excuse the state of the old polaroid, a helicopter not yet mentioned in this thread G-BBBM. I remember my Dad coming home from work, bunging my brother and I into the car to drive back to a nearby hotel he had passed on his way home where this was parked up. I'm the taller of the two chaps in the photo, I think my face says it all...
All the best, Simon.
Last edited by Senior Pilot; 13th Aug 2010 at 23:39.
Reason: Add images from flickr
. Simo8: I am glad that you have decided to contribute to the thread. While there are several 'non pilot' forums on PPRuNe you are most welcome here too! Yes, helicopters are marvellous contraptions and also quite addictive.
I flew JLBI with my godfather many times and I think young William (John Broome's son) used to have his birthday party every year at Alton because I recall us running a shuttle service from the 'Broomested' in Tilston to the Towers with Will's friends and I think we did this more than once. Although I never went there, my godfather regularly dropped off young Will's at school in JLBI.
JLBI's paint scheme was always a bit commercial with the Alton and 'Trentham Gardens' (another one of the Broome estates) logos featuring prominently. This could not be compared to the more elegant colours of the Duke's aircraft in its white and navy blue with gold accents.
The 206's with the first generation emergency 'pop-out' floats did have a solid and rather pleasing look about them and both TALY and JLBI wore these in the beginning. Certainly flying with the pop-outs gave a kind of lateral stability but, the speed (although mainly weight) penalty often meant that putting on 'shorts' (short skids) was the preference for private operations and indeed this is what happened to both TALY and JLBI. In fact, one of the first things my godfather did when he joined Broome, was to change JLBI from pop-out to shorts - not least of all because he added a Decca DANAC and Schermuly flare system to what was an already heavy aircraft.
Regarding BBBM, I would be keen for any more details of this photo, perhaps the name of the hotel and the date, as BBBM was one of the aircraft managed by Ferranti Helicopters and I am collecting images of all the aircraft associated with their operations.
Thanks again for your contribution.
WiganAirways: BFYA was a former Ferranti Helicopters aircraft so has a connection to me through that avenue and POAV, if I'm not mistaken, is an aircraft with which regular thread contributor Earl was connected.
MrChopper: Thanks for the details on JANY, what a wonderful piece of information this is! Jane (Mead) was of course Peter's last (and 3rd) wife who once said of him: "There are always difficulties living with an old sod like Peter" but, she is the one who remained with him till the end and after whom the AS350B (below) is named.
I am still keenly searching for images of G-CHOC which, just like TALY, was a pretty thing with an interesting owner. I know of one occasion my godfather recounted when PTC (Peter the Cad) was ground running CHOC, became cold and turned on the heater (old style with starboard mounted exhaust) while the engineer was leaning into the engine bay. The story goes that he and PTC had a 'heated' exchange over the engineer's burnt duffle coat!
Peter Cadbury's AS350B Ecureuil G-JANY at Cranfield on 5th September 1981 (Photo: Alan Mosiezny)
Peter Cadbury's Squirrel with golden Pegasus motif just visible on the door. On G-CHOC this motif was located near the baggage compartment as previously mentioned by Earl. TALY also had a golden motif, a wheatsheaf, taken from the centre part of the Duke's coat of arms and mounted on TALY's tail.
HelisDW: Thanks for the photo of JLBZ which forms part of Earl's 'Midland's Three' comprising of the former transports of the Duke, John Broome (Alton Towers) and James Bamford (JCB Excavators). All three were located fairly near to each other, all started out as 206's and were up-graded to twins.
RedFlag: What can I say? I really didn't expect to see evidence of TALY's 'birth and delivery' as it were and I had no idea that the journey we would take in seeking to discover more about this aircraft would result in so many interesting twists and turns. I am indeed thrilled that there is a pictorial (and illustrated) record of TALY's earliest days. The past is always fascinating and, more often than not, helps put the present in perspective.
Thanks for making this effort and thanks to your Dad also.
Last edited by Savoia; 13th Sep 2013 at 09:51.
Reason: Amend photo
Thanks for posting those photos which were a trip down memory lane. I must correct you one one small point however. It wasn't John Mulvaney who returned G-BFYA to Veritair at Cardiff - it was me. John (where are you?) must have been doing a ground run or something when you took the photo.
Funny story actually - Joe McGaghy (bless him), the owner of Clyde Helicopters - sent a few friends around to the hangar at SECC to repaint G-BYFA in the Vertair colour scheme at the end of the Police contract lease (must have been around June 1990). They were not professional aircraft spray painters and did a less than satisfactory job. In fact it looked shocking close up and the Welsh Dragon on the tail looked more like Father Christmas.
I was told to fly it down to Cardiff one Sunday and was not looking forward to the reception I expected when Vertair saw what we had done to their Bo105. Myself and Sgt Eddie Haggarty flew it down to Cardiff via a very scenic route through the Lake District - having a close inspection of a few summits (we were both keen hillwalkers), refuel and lunch at Blackpool and eventually landing at Cardiff heliport in the afternoon.
I was very happy and somewhat relieved to discover that the Veritair office was all shut up and there was no one to witness the sorry looking state of their prodigal helicopter. We ended up leaving it parked at the heliport, put the keys through the letter box, climbed over the fence to get out, caught a taxi to the station and a train back to Glasgow.
Never did find out what Mr Verity thought of the paint job!
P.S What was that wonderful (expensive) restaurant called next to Clyde Heliport in your photos? I had my 32nd birthday dinner there - the first time I ever spent over £100 on a dinner for two - a Kings Ransom in those days. Wonderful summer that...
Thanks for the correction, maybe John was taking YA up for a test, or maybe trying to dry the paint, I saw a photo of YA on another web site and was in this livery, but no floats, so I take it the paint stayed on. I made a model of a Sea King in RAF search and rescue colours for Joes son, even down to the single yellow rotor blade, also a JR for George with the reg. G-MUIR, crimson with silver stripes, remember George was also a disc jockey on Clyde 2, with his progamme 'Come fly with me', memories. Wonder where Jim Bruce the engineer is, did he go to Bond at the takeover, or onto pastures new?
The restaurant was named The Pump House, havn't been at the heliport in years, not the free and easy days of Clyde.
In reply to Earl's post, I can confirm that the sequence of aircraft (FW & RW) operated by the DoW during the late 70's early 80's were (I will add the regs later when I have had a chance to check them):- 1. Piper Cherokee 2. Piper Apache 3. Piper Twin Commanche (not an Aztec as I previously thought, that one was hired) These three were all operated by the present DoW's father but used by the current DoW when he was Earl Grosvenor. The Apache was the one that my father made the forced landing in after a twin engine failure in Northern Ireland. As a former RAF glider instructor he made a pretty miraculous landing and everyone walked away unhurt (except my father who cut his nose on the control column!) The newspapers of the time had a great picture of the Apache standing on it's nose in a field after the nose leg sank into the boggy ground ! 4. Enstrom Shark Bought by the current DoW when he was still the Earl. Used as the "proof of concept" that RW was the way forward! and then we get to the "known history" with:- 5. Jet Ranger G-TALY 6. Twin Squirrel G-TALI then there was a return to FW with:- 7. HS 125 8 & 9. Cessna Citations My father has promised to dig out some pictures of TALI and I'll ask him to root out some of the Enstrom too while he's at it!
Savoia, Re. G-BBBM the hotel in question is the Mollington Banastre Chester, I still can't drive past without a quick glance to see if it's back! As for the date, well that would have to be a guess I'm afraid. I did have a look at the polaroid, but alas no date scrawled on the back. I should think 78 or 79 and for some reason, no more than a hunch, I think it may have been quite close to my birthday in late October. Hope that helps.
Okay for E of R ... Yes, Enstrom G-BBRS (28a) was leased to John Crewdson and Gill Aldam's Helicopter Hire initially for the Met Police contract and as I have noted here earlier ... Air Pictorial posted a front cover pic of the heli on Police Service. I was tasked by John Crewdson to do a few days 'demo flying' of the type out of Battersea. I also used Enstrom G-BENO on that task alongside demos to the Police at Kidlington and Glascow. Around early 1993 ish I taught John Crewdson's son Nick to fly rotary. As many will understand the non turbo 28a did struggle a bit with three up, but was good in an emergency as David Voy will testify when he suffered an engine malfunction lifting off from Battersea and promptly landed it back on the pad. I think he later also pulled off a successful auto to a railway siding while over London.
I can'r recall from memnory whethewr m y company Spooner Aviation sold the Enstrom to his lordship, but we did sell an F28a to his colleague Lord (Spenny) Compton of Castle Ashby. My first firm knowledge of Lord Grosvenor was when buying the 206 G-TALY (later G-GSKY) when I also flew with Ken Davies in the company Twin Commanche. Spooner were also the Piper dealer in those days.
In the perod 1988 to 1991 or so, I was one of Clyde Helicopters TREs and routinely visited the Clyde Helipad to carry out their Schedule 9 checks (as they were known as in those days) being line & base checks. On those trips, my log shows I flew B206, G-STVI, G-EYEI and with George Muir, John Mulvaney, Ian MacCallum and Ian Georgeson. As an intiguing side note ... it was on a training trip across Lock Lomond with Ian McCallum that from around 1000 feet, Ian called out "there's a sheep in trouble down there." All I could see were hundreds of sheep below. We dropped down to fifty feet and then landed in the rough pasture and as I took control Ian jumped out and ran across to the stranded sheep which I could now see was trapped belly up in a gulley. I watched with fascination as he struggled with about 1 cwt of very wet sheep to get it out of the gulley and back on its feet. By this time he was plastered almost head to foot with the animal's excreta having perhaps been trapped there for a couple of days. As he climbed aboard I learned at first hand how bad is the smell of large quantities of sheep poo in the confines of a Bell 206 front cabin!
More Tittle Tattle ... at that time I seem to recall Graham Pryke was a Clyde company pilot and flying a B 206, he lost an engine in snow while on police surveillance over Glascow. Sadly the policeman lost his life but Graham survived albeit later there was much legal to-ing and fro-ing regarding the wearing of a safety helmets on utility work. MD Joe McGahey was a good friend and customer of my new firm Starline Helicopters based at Biggin Hill. It was Starline that followed my first company Skyline at Booker.
I'd better stop rab itting but some pruners are v interested I can see.
Oh and while on the registrations department. Helicopter Hire also operated a third Enstrom 28A being G-BCOT, serial 199. Want another yarn.. David Voy was unfortunate to make a test flight at night following some overhaul work on the M.R head. He couldn't know that the three push pull rods enclosed in the mast were connected 120 degrees out of phase. Try working out a controldsequence that would then work. David did damned well to get it down in one piece albeit with heavy skid and resultant damage.
OH & Oh ... a third bit of gossip. Peter Cadbury's lovely lady Jane was earlier my good friend Humphry Mead's wife. I got to know Humphry when he bought his Enstrom from us and learned to fly at Spooner Aviation. G-BBRS was for my boss Bertram Roy Spooner. Will any of this make the pages of Hallo?
Your mention of Graham Pryke's unfortunate accident reminded me that the day of the accident I was at home watching the Ceefax news on TV. I was due to be at the Clyde Helicopters base in a couple of days for an interview with Joe McGaghy for a Police line pilot job.
I was surprised to see a story 'Police helicopter crashes in Glasgow'. I picked up the phone and called Clyde and spoke with the lady in the office, said how sorry I was to hear of the accident and did they still want me to come up for interview in view of this?
She said 'What accident?'. It has apparently only just been reported by local media and even Clyde had not heard about it at that stage.
After the inquest into the death of the Police observer (who died from a head injury), the wearing of helmets and fireproof clothing was consequently made mandatory. You may see from the earlier photos that the Police observers are only wearing shirts and headsets.
DennisK, You seem to have had more to do with the Enstrom than you recall!
I rang my Dad yesterday to ask him to look out some pics of the Enstrom but he was out and while leaving a message with my Mum she recounted a story of her own relating to the Enstrom that might be of interest to you. Apparently my Dad brought a fellow Enstrom pilot home for lunch one day and said pilot repaid the good deed by taking my Mum and my younger sister for a flight in the Enstrom. My Mum was apparently so terrified that she spent the entire flight gripping the pilot's knee, much to my sister's embarassment!
I have checked the facts with my Dad and apparently the pilot in question was a certain DennisK! Surely you don't forget an incident like that in hurry?!