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LUTON History and Nostalgia

Old 8th Apr 2016, 19:14
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Originally Posted by JW411
He was also the F/O of Argosy G-ASXL which flew into a mountain trying to land at Milan on 04/07/65.
Well it struck the top of a 700m hill, but "flew into a mountain" probably sounds better in the pub.
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Old 9th Apr 2016, 12:08
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DaveReidUK:

Sorry old son; that was very careless of me. Hill or mountain matters not a jot if you hit it at speed and wreck the aeroplane so badly that it can't be used again. I seem to remember that he and the captain were unscathed until the captain gashed his leg stepping out through a ragged hole in the fuselage.
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Old 9th Apr 2016, 20:19
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Originally Posted by Luton Anorak
The date for the BEA Argosy at Luton could have been 26th or 27th October 1965 as it diverted to Luton en-route to Heathrow from Dusseldorf due to fog and parked overnight - along with two Aer Lingus Viscounts, two BKS Ambassadors, a BKS HS748 and an Electra and Viscount of KLM.
Excellent thanks for that - I have photos of a few of those so I'll dig them out.
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 16:09
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Just a few more McAlpine orientated
The first was not my picture and I can't remember where I got it, it may well have been a publicity shot.



And finally G-OPOL after a monumental amount of work


Sorry not great pictures well before digital
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 16:45
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The wing and engine seen in the foreground belongs to a Piaggio P-166 and was owned by McAlpine. I have never heard of a Piaggio P-166 but here is a photo of it taken at Luton with its rear facing engines. Piaggio P-166, G-APWY, Sir Robert McAlpine and Sons Ltd
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 17:05
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There`s another one in ME`s photo,other side of Dove.Regular operater from Luton in`60s.
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 17:14
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McAlpines were UK agents for Piaggio and several P-166s came through Luton. I remember one having to land wheels-up on the grass when they could not get the gear down.

In the first pic I think the C310 in the middle is G-APUF (haven't looked closely). It was three-tone green. I think there may have been another similar colour however.

The HS125 G-AYRR was after John Cunningham landed it (unintentionally!) with the gear retracted. He had the Spanish Minister of Tourism on board and was early so he slowed down but the gear warning horn was annoying him so he pulled the circuit breaker . . . . . John was very polite. After the aircraft came to a halt he said on the RT "I am awfully sorry, I seemed to have made a mess of your runway."

It was a Saturday. On the following Monday he called all his pilots into his office at Hatfield (he was de Havilland's Chief Pilot), told them what he had done and on no account were they to do the same.
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 17:40
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Originally Posted by vintage ATCO
It was a Saturday.
23rd October, 1971, to be precise - G-AYRR was only a few months old at the time.
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 18:03
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I believe the inverted Arrow IV, OO-FLH, was a victim of the 'Great Storm' of October 1987 - I happened to have visited Luton on the day of the storm and remember that pic or very similar in the Telegraph a day or two later.
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Old 10th Apr 2016, 18:33
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Originally Posted by vintage ATCO
The HS125 G-AYRR was after John Cunningham landed it (unintentionally!) with the gear retracted. He had the Spanish Minister of Tourism on board and was early so he slowed down but the gear warning horn was annoying him so he pulled the circuit breaker . . . . . John was very polite. After the aircraft came to a halt he said on the RT "I am awfully sorry, I seemed to have made a mess of your runway."
One of the passengers was HS Hatfield Sales Manager Chris Putler who said it was such a good landing that they only realised something was wrong when they saw how tall the people outside were!
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 07:07
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I think the Piaggio G-APWY is preserved at Wroughton. I remember the sound of it flying around in my youth!!

EGGW.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 07:53
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Some time in the early/mid 60s, said Piaggio force-landed in Ashdown Forest.

It suffered only minor damage, but obviously couldn't be flown out again, so it was dismantled and returned to Luton by road.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 08:46
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One sunny Spring Term day in 1959 ,during the morning play break at Stopsley Junior School not one , but two Piaggio pushers heralded their first arrival with that resonating drone. Flying quite low over the school it was apparent that they were different. One was a , later to be very familiar, P166: the other ( as included in my Ian Allen ABC Continental Aircraft ) was a P136. Quite a day for a nine year old.

Last edited by Haraka; 11th Apr 2016 at 09:47.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 09:52
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McAlpine Riley Doves




Riley Dove conversions in the McAlpine hangar. Original tails can be seen stored on the mezzanine. Photo suggests 1964 and is a Waller Studios shot - local photographers from that era.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 10:07
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Piaggio GAPWY was still operating in the late 70s. Operated by McAlpines for Marconi if I remember correctly.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 12:39
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GAPWY was actually owned by Marconi and operated for them by McAlpine.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 21:15
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OO-FLH and the Great Storm 16/10/87

Originally Posted by treadigraph
I believe the inverted Arrow IV, OO-FLH, was a victim of the 'Great Storm' of October 1987 - I happened to have visited Luton on the day of the storm and remember that pic or very similar in the Telegraph a day or two later.
A couple more pictures of OO-FLH. Shortly after I took the 2nd picture the chain attached to the nose snapped causing the aircraft to swing dangerously close to the personnel behind it.






All flights were cancelled until around lunchtime, with aircraft being turned into wind.
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Old 11th Apr 2016, 21:49
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Looks like a Mediterranean Express 1-11 by McAlpines. I don't think they lasted long, maybe a year or so.
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Old 12th Apr 2016, 08:28
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The downfall of Med Express was them taking the 2nd 1-11 from the desert and ferrying it (without auto-pilot) back to LTN. It sat in the back of the McAlpine hangar and left on the back of a low loader some months later, never to fly again. Complete waste of money although I suspect egoes were driving the project rather than desire to expand the fleet.

At the same time, Med Ex were lining up to take a B737-300 but money had by then run out and rest as they say, is history.....
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Old 12th Apr 2016, 19:50
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Med Express




G-AYUW looking a little poorly near the run up bay 19th October 1988





and leaving Luton 26th June 1989
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