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Wolverhampton Pendeford and THE MAN IN THE SKY

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Wolverhampton Pendeford and THE MAN IN THE SKY

Old 4th Apr 2009, 22:54
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Wolverhampton Pendeford and THE MAN IN THE SKY

Anyone got any information about this period at Pendeford when this Jack Hawkins film was made. A rather well known CFI at the time, ' Woody' was at Don Everall Aviation and famously sacked for being drunk.

Below is a post which appeared a few years ago



Does anyone have any further information on Pendeford Airfield. The airport was situated adjacent to Boulton and Paul Aircraft works. It was opened in 1938 by Amy Johnson and was the wartime home of No 28 Elementary Flying Training School operating 108 Tiger Moths. After the war, Lindsay Neale and Peter Tishaw died when the Balliol T2 crashed after the windscreen disintegrated a power dive. In 1956 Charles Chrichton directed the film 'The Man in The Sky' starring Jack Hawkins (flying a Bristol Freighter). Don Everall Aviation operated the airport with Auster J1N's, Beagle Terriers, Piper Colts and at least one Cherokee 160.

Sadly, a De Havilland Dove crashed onto some houses killing the crew and at least one occupant of the houses - this was the end for Pendford Airport and it closed in 1970.

I do hope that the many knowledgable readers of these posts will reply. Thanks!

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Old 5th Apr 2009, 09:54
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As far as I remember the Dove was operated by the NCB, National Coal Board, and was trying to do a circling approach in poor weather, making several attempts. A witness in a high rise block of flats said she saw the aircraftt flying past her window with one pilot looking forward and one in the normal position!.

I understand that it was this accident that brought about the introduction of circling minima
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Old 5th Apr 2009, 10:15
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A Google search comes up with G-AVHV, operated by McAlpines, owned by Dowty, who at that stage probably owned what had been B-P. There's an online link to the accident report here

A similar search did bring up some history for the airfield, but not much more than you have in your opening post.
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Old 5th Apr 2009, 14:48
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Wolverhampton Pendeford and The Man in the Sky

The Dove that crashed was definately not from the National Coal Board (registration G-ARUM) for I enjoyed (!) flying it many years later. It was indeed operated by Dowty Group Services. My father was in the film and managed to obtain Jack Hawkins autograph. I watched it on television many years ago and remember thinking that it had a rather plodding story line. I would very much like to see it again, however, to see if my critical facilities have improved over the years.

John
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Old 12th Apr 2009, 16:28
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Thanks John--please see Don Everall post on where are they now too.

I have been trying to get a copy of 'Man In The Sky' for years but its not available.
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Old 13th Apr 2009, 14:51
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Decision Against Time (aka The Man in the Sky)

Oh yes it is! – But under the US title “Decision Against Time”

Rare Classic DVDs - Drama Collector Classics
Decision Against Time (aka The Man in the Sky) (aka Test Pilot) 1957

I have a copy from them, which is taken from US TV as no “official” version appears to be available.
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Old 15th Apr 2009, 12:43
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Is it reasonable quality?
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Old 15th Apr 2009, 12:44
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Gift horse - Mouth.
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Old 15th Apr 2009, 13:32
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Gift horse-arsehole
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Old 15th Apr 2009, 13:46
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Oh dear Pull what. I think you may have blown it.
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Old 15th Apr 2009, 20:10
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I have found that some channels on British Sky do show poor quality films from the USA but the DVD I was sent is good quality.

From my (32 inch LCD TV) the Black and White picture has good quality contrast and sharpness and the sound is also good. The film is continuous (without adverts) but does have a channel logo in the corner at times if I remember correctly.

I have been very pleased with it and the service Classic Films on DVD - High Quality DVDs of Rare Movies provided.
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Old 18th Apr 2009, 23:34
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Thank you very much--I think I have a copy coming! Great list of films on there--It reminded me of afew i would like to see again.

Anyone seen a copy of the BA Hamble film 'AIRLINE PILOT' floating around?
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Old 21st Apr 2009, 16:44
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Excellent film and great shots of Wolverhampton and the Bristol Freighter, what an aircraft!!!!
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Old 27th Apr 2010, 21:16
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Man In The Sky.

The film has recently been re-released(digitally restored) in The Ealing Studios Collection and is available for £9.99 .Pls see link.

Play.com (UK) - Free Delivery - DVD - Search Results: the man in the sky

Beautiful quality.

Colin P.
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Old 3rd May 2010, 13:02
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Great DVD - Excellent shots of Wolverhampton airfield--thanks again BAZ!
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Old 4th Jun 2010, 12:33
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From AMAZON

Man In The Sky [DVD] [1956]: Amazon.co.uk: Jack Hawkins, Elizabeth Sellars, Walter Fitzgerald, John Stratton, Eddie Byrne, Victor Maddern, Charles Crichton: DVD
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 13:48
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Man in the sky. ( jack hawkins ) 1956.

Yes. I am geoff philbrick. I started my PPL course on the 24-march 1956, and completed my test on the 24-june 1956. The CFI at the time was Flt LT. Gibson ( Gibby !! ) . The training was on austers, although at the very last minute before the test, we were suddenly required to do spinning and recovery solo, which involved switching to Tigers for that exercise. !! ( not funny ) . The only other instructors at the time were Boyle and Bradley , who was just a week end instructor. The name " Woody " just does not ring a bell. (sorry). The Silver City plane being used in the film finished up on top of the canal, and held up the film. I was in one of the shots in the film, but in all these years have never seen the film advertised any where. I have only just learnt today ( for the very first time in all these years ) that the film was released in USA in 1957, under a different title. !!
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Old 7th Sep 2010, 12:32
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The OP mention of CFI "Woody" and his penchant for the occasional shandy stitrred the grey matter - one such was CFI at Bristol & Wessex Aeroplane Club, Lulsgate, circa 1965 ( piper colt, carribean and an auster for spinning!)
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Old 10th Jan 2011, 14:29
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Wolverhampton(Pendeford)Airfield/Airport/Aerodrome

more Pendeford/W-Ton Airfield info;
The History of Pendeford

Black Country History
Scroll down when at this link for "Defiant" Fighter Aircraft.

Also a short excerpt from Wikipedia ; Pendeford Airfield In the 1930s Wolverhampton Council decided to establish an airfield at Pendeford, on 178 acres (0.72 km2) of land at Barnhurst formerly used for sewage disposal. The airfield was Officially opened on 27 June 1938, by which time Boulton Paul Aircraft
had established a factory there to build its aircraft including the
Defiant fighter (which had its first flight at Pendeford in August 1937, almost a year before the airfield was officially opened). During World War II the airfield was also used for training military pilots, with over 100 de Havilland Tiger Moths
stationed there at one stage. Postwar the airfield was used for private and training aircraft, with limited scheduled services from 1953.

By the end of the 1960s the airfield was losing money and there were safety concerns over the close proximity of houses to the airfield; as a result the airfield was closed on 31 December 1970. A memorial to the airfield can be seen on the walls of an estate within Pendeford. Shortly before the airfield's closure, on 9 April 1970,
a de Havilland Dove crashed onto a house in Redhurst Drive, Fordhouses and caught fire.
The crew of the aircraft (which was owned by Dowty Group,
by then the owner of Boulton Paul) were attempting to land at the airfield in poor weather; the accident investigation determined that the aircraft
stalled at a height too low for the crew to regain control. An occupant of the house and the two people on board the aircraft were killed in the accident, two more people escaped the burning house by jumping out of an upstairs window and were slightly injured.
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Old 11th Jan 2011, 11:25
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I remember going to an airshow there 1963 ? when a Blackburn Beverley landed.
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