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Vulcan XH 558 Threads (merged)

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Vulcan XH 558 Threads (merged)

Old 4th Jul 2009, 21:59
  #2561 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 6
Whatever the circumstances the 2 following things are true

1. VTS did not appear to submit a PtF application in time.

2. VTS, knowing that there PTF, had not been applied for in time, continued business as usual, even though it was obvious that the Vulcan would be grounded pending resolution of the issue.
I'm sorry, but on the info we have, both of those statements are nothing but speculation.

We don't know what the conversations between the VTST and the CAA were, whether there was an understanding to fast track things if other requirements could be met (the CAA bent over backwards last year, they wouldn't do it if there weren't a few people in power there that wanted to see this work).

We don't know whether the paperwork was submitted to "get it in the system and ready".

We don't know what the conditions for granting of the PTF that weren't met or the mitigations that could not be made were.

I'm as pissed off as the next person, I will be at Waddington tomorrow to see her, even if she doesn't fly, as I can't make any of the other major shows this year, and if I by some miracle bump into Mr Phlemming he'll have to do some pretty quick explaining if he wants to end the day with as many teeth as he started with.

But at the end of the day we don't have enough facts to even pin blame on anyone yet. Yes VTST is ultimately responsible, but that doesn't mean that they must get the blame. We simply don't have the information to decide that yet.

At the end of the day all I want to see is a flying Vulcan. My first memory of an airshow was going with my family to RAF Leeming to see XH558's last show there. I was 9 years old and it's what started my obsession with flight. I'm as frustrated as everyone else, but this is just another hurdle to overcome, there's no point slinging mud yet, there will be time for that when actual facts emerge!

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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:06
  #2562 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: London
Posts: 12
As you can see from the number of posts I have made to PPRuNe I am more of a fascinated reader than a contributor as not being part of the aviation world I don't feel qualified to comment on issues and I leave it to those that do (or pretend to!).

However, I am so exceptionally disappointed as a punter at Waddo today that I felt I had to add my voice to those who have been critical of TVOC.

After I got caught out with RIAT last year I made sure to keep an eye on both TVOC's site and PPRuNe to see if there was any impediment to XH558 flying this weekend. Nothing on either of these sources (I even checked before I left the house at 0530 this morning to see if there were any last minute developments). So after a three hour car journery to Waddo I heard the news on the Airshow radio station just as I paid my entrance fee. Gutted. With the frankly poor line up for the 'RAF's premier air show' the Vulcan was the only reason I was making the trip (I really feel for the poor chap who travelled from South Wales -see RAF Waddington thread in Mil Aircrew). Had XH558 gone tech then that would just have been one of those things on a complex aircraft. But this is a monumental balls up. I heard several mutterings from TVOC members in the crowd line that they would cancel their memberships over this.

A PR disaster for TVOC and despite what was said over the tannoy it would appear that TVOC are not entirley blameless? Treating both TVOC members and the viewing public with this contempt is going to hit TVOC's coffers hard when they need to fund raise again - the money will simply dry up. If indeed it emerges that TVOC were not directly responsible for her failure to fly this weekend, they at least need to shoulder some responsibility for the management of the renewal for the PtF.

I am happy to be corrected, but presumably TVOC would have known that she wouldn't be able to a fly a little earlier than this morning. Could they really not have issued the press release (like last night) before people set out for Waddo?

The only bright side (apart from topping up the tan) was the Breitling Team - stunning display guys. Blew the Reds out of the water.

Last edited by Bob on the Ground; 4th Jul 2009 at 22:25. Reason: for being rubbish at TLAs
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:14
  #2563 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Away from home Rat
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XH558 is grounded until the CAA say otherwise.. I gave TVOC 50 quid last week, what a waste it seems..

Nice post Wingco, said as it really is..

The CAA state on the progress of application for PtF's on their website. XH558's was only submitted in the last week of June..

It takes 15 days to officially process and the CAA have done TVOC enough favours..
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:32
  #2564 (permalink)  
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Discus_296 we do know when it was submitted and when its estimated issue date is, so kiss goodbuy to Yeovilton as well.... 14/07/2009

Received Date:26/06/2009

GINFO Search Results | Aircraft Register | Safety Regulation

Phleming and the Chief Eng should resign at the very least, talk about gross lack of competency.
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:40
  #2565 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Posts: 465
Last cash they will ever see from me. Utter [email protected] I hope thats it for them and it gets passed to somebody who can legitimately operate the machine.
But I doubt it very much.
Martin W and Co must be red faced at this. I do feel for them
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:40
  #2566 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Daventry
Posts: 349
Feeling conned

Today was to be my first airshow in years.Why? The hook for me was to see a flying Vulcan, and I feel conned that to get 558 there when it was known the the PTF would be expired for the the show was purely a commercial decision to get bums on seats.Did these people really believe that the CAA would feel sorry for them and grant them an extension-you wouldn't get one for a Cessna 150 let alone a machine of this size and complexity?
Couldn't a few high speed taxy runs been arranged to partially satisfy the punters?
Have huge admiration for the guys and gals that have got oil on their hands and got this great machine flying again but feel thay have been badly served by their admin.
I felt the rest of the show was lacklustre and disjointed and I feel sorry for the way the Vampire was held for so long-why call him up to the hold when he clearly wasn't needed for a bit?(thought his display was very nice though).

Bit of thread drift but as it is a few years since I last went to an airshow-have the safety brigade been at it again:the 'low' flying looked rather high to me and some manouevres seem very distant.
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:45
  #2567 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: UK
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We do know the official date of submission, however we do not know the circumstances surrounding it, hence my point.

"Estimated Issue Date" is the CAA equivalent of the "please allow up to 28 days for delivery" you see when ordering something with coupons from a cornflakes packet, an arbitrary target date.

It may have been perfectly reasonable to submit when they did (in the "get it in the system and we'll negotiate" scenario).*

It may have been a monumental balls up due to timing (i.e. if the only thing holding it up was the papework).

It may have been submitted as a last ditch effort (i.e. "I don't think we'll make the conditions but if the paperwork is in at least we have a chance").

When we actually find out what the true circumstances were I'll happily join the lynch mob going after whichever arsehole was at fault, but without that information we can't even state with any degree of confidence whether it was submitted too late. To do so is nothing but conjecture and assumption.


*It's worth re-iterating that this is a perfectly plausible and reasonable scenario in light of their accomodating attitude last year. As another poster said, you don't get the CAA to bend over backwards for a your average Cessna, someone there wants this to succeed more than your average PTF aircraft...
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 22:57
  #2568 (permalink)  
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Which part of the CAA website saying application recieved on the 26th 6 2009 do you not understand? now allowing for the Postal sevices and not expecting TVOC still to be using carrier pidgeons it will have been post on or about the 24th so they would not get it to a Friday and it would not be touched over the weekend, that leaves 5 days to get it processed.........

Even I do not make that rudimentary error with my applications and as a Permit can be applied for a month in advance, the fault points to one place..............

Cessnas are now done online and the CAA has little input, I fill in a few boxes online, print out the certificate, sign it and the job is done, I then post them a copy, but I am responsible for the Issue as such, the website gives the CAA the details and the ARC is renewed.
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Old 4th Jul 2009, 23:37
  #2569 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: west sussex
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Surely the simple solution would be to take 'OUR AIRCRAFT' that the BRITISH PUBLIC and SPONSORS have contributed MILLIONS of pounds to get back into the air, BACK INTO PUBLIC OWNERSHIP by transferring it back to the ROYAL AIR FORCE. Then they can operate it like the true professionals that the RAF are - 'The Battle of Britain and Cold War Memorial Flight'.

On another subject - How likely is it that the reasons for cancellation last Sunday at Biggin Hill are true, given the myriad excuses above for this weekend. All I can say is that had the Vulcan flown at Biggin last Sunday a certain very large airliner in formation with the Red Arrows would have had it's PR wings rather clipped! (Only speculation of course).


In my humble opinion it really is the only way to preserve this superb aircraft in a flying condition for the rest of it's serviceable life.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 00:05
  #2570 (permalink)  
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Wont happen, it struggles to get the funding as it is, the last thing the RAF needs is a drain on resources and manpower which they lack.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 00:41
  #2571 (permalink)  
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Well I am now thoroughly pissed off. As others have said I havn't been to an air show for a number of years and thought that as this year is the 40th anniversary of me joining the RAF and also as my first posting was to Waddo (line sqdn) I thought this would be a good time to see the two aircraft I worked on namely Vulcans (558 included) and the Lanc and had bought tickets for Sunday. Now to hear the reasons that 558 won't be flying has really took the biscuit. They have had the last donation from me and as far as I'm concerned I now couldn't care less if it is grounded and all the arses at the top are sacked. I wonder if a refund would be a possibility, as has also been mentioned the poor line up was only brightened by the fact that 558 was to fly and VTTST had made a big thing about the flypast with the Red Arrows. What a total shambles the management of the trust are, I just hope I bump into Mr Pleb tomorrow.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 03:06
  #2572 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Arizona USA
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Have a look at the Red Bull DC-6B.
Displayed all over Europe, based in Austria...and US registered.
Yup, an N number, alright.

Obvious answer, get an FAA inspector over to the UK, have the Vulcan inspected/approved in the limited category, paint the N number on...and fly the aeroplane to everyones satisfaction.

There, that was easy.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 05:00
  #2573 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Just another quick question to ask your mate when you are next sipping your Pimms together:

Ask him why, when he was on TV on thursday evening last, telling us all how wonderful things were with the Vulcan, did Plemming not have the balls to tell everyone that there might just be an itsy-bitsy, teeny weeny very slight 'nothing to worry about' problem with the aircraft??

I'll tell you why, because the man has NO balls, and can't face up to the fact that he is out of his depth with this job, together with many other Half-Wits involved in TVOC. I wouldn't let Plemming manage my toilets!

Just for the record, another good friend of mine told me last night that the people manning the VULCAN stall on the flight line had told them that TVOC had simply 'forgotten' about the application!

What a bloody joke this has now sunk too.

The Winco
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 07:09
  #2574 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2003
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I think given the current state of the Defence budge the RAF taking on an aircraft with no other role than being for airdisplays is a non starter.
The Vulcan has proved to be a huge cock up. And Airshow orginisers should now adopt a payment by results approach to TVOC. They get a basic fee no gate returns and only get full fee on completion of flying display.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 07:36
  #2575 (permalink)  
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Vulcan displays at RAF Waddington cancelled
04 July 2009 - VTTS

The Vulcan to the Sky Trust (VTST) and Marshall Aerospace are deeply disappointed and saddened to have to announce that the planned displays of the Vulcan at the RAF Waddington International Airshow on 4th and 5th July have had to be cancelled.

As part of the 2005-7 Major servicing, a number of structural inspections had to be deferred, because it was not feasible to complete them on XH558ís airframe. It was planned by VTST and Marshal Aerospace, in agreement with BAE Systems and the Civil Aviation Authority, that these inspections would be carried out before the renewal of XH558ís Permit to Fly on 3rd July 2009, using the airframe of BAE Systems-owned Vulcan XM603 at Woodford, as part of the scrapping process of this aircraft. Unfortunately, despite best intentions, it has not yet proved possible to complete or establish mitigations for all these inspections. Consequently, we have currently not fully met the conditions that would enable the issue of XH558ís Permit to Fly renewal.

XH558 is however is fully serviceable and ready for flight, and Marshall Aerospace together with VTST and BAE Systems are doing all they can as quickly as they can to resolve this unexpected, one-off issue within the next few days. We are very sad that it is not going to be possible for the Vulcan to display at Waddington over the weekend of 4th/5th July.

For more information on this Press Release, please contact:

VTST - Richard Clarke:
07714 898548 / [email protected]
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 07:56
  #2576 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2008
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XH558 is however is fully serviceable and ready for flight

Interesting use of the word 'serviceable'. In my day as a Vulcan SEngO, OC Eng Wg and my squadron OC would have been on my back if I had declared an aircraft as S when it was still awaiting clearance to fly from higher authority.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 08:28
  #2577 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 1999
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Serviceable, but not airworthy until the Permit to Fly is issued.

The VTST press release is a joke. Not the slightest hint of any apology to the thousands of supporters they have let down with their crass managerial ineptitude.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 08:47
  #2578 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2004
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Vulcan 558 @ CAA

Although there seems an element of 'cock up' in the Vulcan saga, it does seem odd that if the aircraft is safe to fly Friday that a small extention of the PtF could not be granted to allow the paperwork to be completed.

I think the CAA are likely to get a lot more stick in the near future having refused to issue Permits to Fly for all the aircraft in a well known large warbird operator in the South East. An audit of paperwork is being carried out at the height of the Display Season, which will take some time. This effects the largest warbird airshow in the UK where most of the running costs of the organisation are recouped from the gate receipts. A loss of a huge sum of money,as many aircraft from overseas, perversly with lesser CAA oversight ,are having to be brought in for the event.
Most of the aircraft are fully serviceable but are grounded by bureaucracy.

In my airline career with the largest UK operator we had many CAA maintenance/flight ops audits which were done during normal airline operations. The company was not grounded during the audit as in this case.

Many people are of the opinion that with many CAA functions going to EASA the remaining CAA operatives are giving the remaining small UK operators in all parts of UK aviation a hard time in order to justify their jobs.

Campaign Against Aviation! it's getting worse.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 09:15
  #2579 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2006
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Cessna. In general I'd agree, but looking at all the information about this one, I have to say that it seems the CAA are in the right.

I'm saddened, and angry, about the lack of information in advance. The fact that something relatively simple like making sure the paperwork is correct and submitted in plenty of time is beyond the capabilities of the management team doesn't bode well for the future of the project.

I missed all her flights last year due to a major illness, and to see her flying this year has been a major goal, so if this is to be her ignominious end, buried under the ineptitude and stupidity of well paid "senior management" then I will be deeply saddened.

Can we boot out the idiots and put in a management team that can actually manage?

Pi$$ed off of Manchester.
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Old 5th Jul 2009, 09:40
  #2580 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Lincolnshire
Age: 45
Posts: 1
Exclamation No More Waddington

Morning All

I arrived at Waddington at 8.40 yesterday, Traffic was ok and the weather was fantasic, However this was soon to be washed away as, A) The Vulcan XH558 didnt fly AGAIN.... B) No Tornado, WTF ????? im sure you all know what WTF means lol and C) No Harrier ????
Whats going on with waddington ????
Sorry people but this air-show is getting worse by the year.
More and more people are not going each year & this is because the military aircraft are getting beyond a joke.
NO more waddington for me, Fairford is the way forward a PROPPER air-show !!
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