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RAF Sharjah

Old 6th Mar 2013, 17:15
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And the view downwind.
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Old 6th Mar 2013, 20:41
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BAC1-11

This company aircraft staged through on 2.3.66. It was on a "world tour" according to my log book and the next stops were Bombay and Tehran. Was it demo'd to Gulf at Bahrain I wonder?



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Old 6th Mar 2013, 20:55
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In 1966 Gulf had no aspirations towards jets. Inventions of the devil that lost money, was Alan Bodger's - correct - view. I don't think even the F27s had arrived at that time. Alan liked those, but not as much as the beloved DC3s, which really did earn money.

This only changed when Abu Dhabi and Oman joined the shareholders and wanted something slightly more prestigious. The BAC trials aircraft at Bait was one of the ones that Gulf bought, -400s ex the Phillipines as I recall but maybe that's wrong.

Brakedwell...sorry, I haven't a clue who was flying that day. Some of the Gulf Captains, converting from F27 and just back from the type course, were there and took some part in it, especially showing the BAC pilots the way along the approach. I think 'Fingers' Barnard was one of them.
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Old 8th Mar 2013, 07:28
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Don't remember the BAC1-11 staging through Sharjah, and I was there at the time. But do remember a Lebanese/Middle Eastern airlines aircraft lobbing in enroute Lebanon-Mombasa or coming back that was broken. We Linies sorted it, and later a freebee ticket to Beirut was raffled off. I won the ticket, but declined the trip as it was only for the airfare - no accommodation included. Beirut was pretty pricey place to stay at the time, well out of Cpl Tech's pay packet.
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Old 8th Mar 2013, 16:04
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Sharjah a/c visitors.

capot I don't have too many 'Gulf Avn' DC-3's logged down in my notes for Sharjah and I don't seem to have taken photo's of the ones that did come in. Perhaps I thought they were too 'common' then! I know our mail came into Dubai A/P and often after work I 'cadged' a lift with the Army "postie" guys to collect it off the DC-3(from Bahrain I assume?) Very quiet place then, there never seemed to be many a/c there, only the odd 'Iran Air' DC-3.
alisoncc Well there you are, I never saw that Lebanese 1-11 that you mentioned! Though mind you, as we went swimming at Khan Creek most afternoons & I daresay that even I missed quite a few of the visiting a/c. I remember while at Khan Creek 3 Indian A/F An.12's taking off from Sharjah after a short refuelling stop and climbing up over our heads. Drat - missed them! Well it certainly was a great place for anyone like myself who had an interest in aviation. Did you see any of the Helio H500 Twin Couriers that staged through. Apparently there were only 7 built and I saw 5 of them but only managed to photograph 2. They mostly arrived late at night and left in the early hours. The other 2 may have passed through but I was away for a month when I 'indulged' back to the UK for Christmas. They were en route to India where I believe they were(allegedly!) used by the CIA in Tibet. Even their 'N' regs were bogus, I think I have info' somewhere that says one of them should have been a DC-9!
Were you at Sharjah in Sept' '65 when a French A/F Breguet 763 Provence en route to Tahiti had to make an unscheduled landing with a cracked exhaust manifold? Wonder whether you worked on that?

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Old 8th Mar 2013, 16:43
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I can't remember seeing any Gulf Aviation DC 3's at Sharjah during 1959-61, only Doves and Herons, but they must have been used regularly as a wet leased Kalinga Airlines DC 3 crashed in 1960. I don't know if it had been in G A colours


On 10 July 1960, the thirteen passengers and three crew on board a Gulf Aviation Douglas C-47 (registered VT-DGS) died when the aircraft crashed during a flight from Doha to Sharjah. As the wreckage could not be located, the cause for this worst accident in the history of the airline could not be determined.[10]

The wreckage was in fact found several years later, about 30 miles east of SHJ.
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Old 8th Mar 2013, 22:06
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I think you're right about the DC-3's brakedwell. Still the same in '65-'66, as I've just had a quick glance through my notes and although I saw quite a few Heron movements, there were less than five of the Dakota. I won't say my observations were 100% but I usually logged all of the visitors.
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Old 11th Mar 2013, 17:19
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"SHARJAH IS A GOOD POSTING!"

Have been clearing out a lot of items prior to moving house. Came across a photocopied magazine article as per the above title "By the OC, RAF Sharjah, Squadron Leader T.H. Sheppard, FRGS." Written around 1965-6, it comprises of five pages of info' and photo's dispelling the rumours that were around at the time that it was a "rubbish" posting. On my last page(406) it says 'Concluded on page 412.' - has anyone got the full article? And what magazine was it published in, could it have been 'Air Clues?' I received this from a friend of mine shortly after returning to the UK, so the source of the article is lost in the "mists of time!"
Two of the photo's are in leesaranda's post No. 394, they are the ones taken by JD of the TP landing at Sharjah and the Para's being offloaded at Saiq. Couple of quotes are...."Despite its inelegance, the Twin Pioneer, like the Beverly supports a unique task that no other aircraft could effect."(alluding to the TOS and Para patrols in the Jebel Akhdar)......and......"whilst scheduled to start building within the next few months is a new station headquarters, education section and supply squadron."

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Old 11th Mar 2013, 19:00
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Tom Shepherd was the last S/L CO at Sharjah. Subsequently it was inflated in time for closure!

Tom drove his newly purchased personal Landrover overland to take up his posting. He was a bit of a "keep fit springer" and relished this seemingly backwater posting. One of life's very pleasant eccentrics.
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Old 11th Mar 2013, 20:47
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Shepherd, fabulous guy. Taught me the basics of astro navigation out in the desert somewhere whilst on one of his "sand tyre testing jaunts". I say "somewhere" as I am not sure that I ever really go the hang of shooting the stars. The sky was so clear at night remember watching "Sputnik" passing overhead on one occasion.
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Old 19th Mar 2013, 16:13
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Misscanada

It was indeed 'inflated' to Group Captain' for the final years; I spent the last 18 months there up to the closing down. Group Captain Cedric something, only chap there on an accompanied posting. No beauty but she started to look better!
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Old 24th Mar 2013, 13:24
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New visit to RAF Sharjah

Hey everyone, today (24/03/2013) I visited RAF Sharjah. Added to the Avro Anson, DeHavilland Heron, DeHavilland Dove, DC-3 and BOAC Comet on display, is now an Auster Autocrat reg G-AJRE which landed here on 5th Oct 2012 on the 80th anniversary of the first landing at the airbase. Wonder how they landed the aircraft here though with less space in the airport compound area.....

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Old 24th Mar 2013, 14:29
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Thanks for the information Savio. I knew one was going to be delivered from England, but I did not know it had arrived. I doubt if it FLEW in though! Not much open space left in central Sharjah. Maybe flew into SHJ?

Do you have any photographs?

Laurence

Last edited by l.garey; 24th Mar 2013 at 16:33.
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Old 24th Mar 2013, 14:54
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I just checked up with a friend who was involved in setting up the Al Mahatta museum some years ago, and he tells me the Auster was dismantled at Coventry and shipped in a container. It was re-erected at SHJ and flew around the UAE for a while before the hand-over to the museum last October.

Please post a photograph if you have one!

Laurence
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Old 24th Mar 2013, 16:32
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For a moment there I had visions of a "scene" down King Abdul Aziz Street!
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Old 24th Mar 2013, 16:39
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Recent view of the runway looking SE. I can't see an Auster.



Laurence
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Old 24th Mar 2013, 16:56
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Recent view of the runway looking SE. I can't see an Auster.
It might be behind you
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Old 25th Mar 2013, 11:07
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Quote:
Recent view of the runway looking SE. I can't see an Auster.
It might be behind you
Just heard the pilot call the tower. He's on finals, although unsure whether cleared for 13L or 13R.
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Old 25th Mar 2013, 11:16
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As it's an Auster the grass strip in the middle would be best, but maybe a bit short. I remember the Auster being tricky to land, so grass would be fine!

Laurence

Last edited by l.garey; 25th Mar 2013 at 11:17.
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Old 25th Mar 2013, 11:21
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Just heard the pilot call the tower. He's on finals, although unsure whether cleared for 13L or 13R.
In which case he is trying to land at the wrong airport. That road is aligned on 30/12
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