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Airliner flight deck training flights in the 70s and 80s.

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Airliner flight deck training flights in the 70s and 80s.

Old 10th Aug 2017, 13:36
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Airliner flight deck training flights in the 70s and 80s.

Which UK airports and airfields (including MOD) were the popular spots for circuits and bumps, instrument training and general handling back in the days when simulators weren't as commonplace as they are now ? At Leeds Bradford I remember Air Anglia and Air UK kept the Friendships busy on training jollies when they weren't flying to Amsterdam and Edinburgh. I'm sure BIA dropped in once or twice to do circuits with the Herald. That's all I can personally remember.

IIRC British Airways went to Brize Norton with the Concordes. Where did they go with the Viscounts and Tridents ? Britannia, Dan-Air, Monarch and so on ? Any memories ?
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 13:46
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BA Concordes and DC-10s used RAE Bedford on occasion.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 13:52
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prestwick was a fav along with stansted EMA and Bournemouth

also shannon & NQY

Cambrian went to Seville for their 1-11 training
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 13:55
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Stansted and Prestwick both blessed with long runways (and not much traffic) so ideal then. Jet2 use Prestwick and Doncaster. Nowadays I think Stansted may be a little busy for training flights.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 13:58
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a sad aside is that British airtours bent a 707 training at PIK and it burnt out

BMA crashed a Viscount and a F27 on training at MAN and EMA respectively both with fatalities and serious injury
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 14:19
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Monarch landed a 1-11 at Stansted with the gear up. One of many similar occurances!
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 15:19
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In 1989 Britannia sent the 12 of us on the course to Shannon for the best part of a week with 6 instructors, a pair of students each. Stayed at the Shannon Shamrock. We left and returned to Luton.

Other places I've been for circuit training are EMA, BFS with ABCarriers, Ostend and some airfield in Denmark that I can't recall (LR 60), don't even know if I logged it! For the 767 at Brits we did Zero Flight Time training. Experienced 737 pilots (1500 hrs?) could go straight from the sim on to passenger carrying aircraft. No problem at all.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 15:25
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I remember seeing the Monarch 1'11 just before it departed STN, back to Hurn I believe? With very temporary looking skins blind riveted to the belly.
Growing up next to STN in the 70's the Qantas 707's, Invicta Vanguards, TMAC CL44's and various Britannias pounding the circuit are fond memories.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 15:25
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RAF transport squadrons regularly carried out ILS approach and overshoots at several UK civilian airfields. Recall Britannia and VC10's at MAN.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 16:03
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Seville seems a long way to go for training flights. I assume there was a very good reason when it seems the rest of the Brits were using East Midlands, Stansted and Prestwick. Maybe these three were getting too crowded with other training flights.

What were Qantas 707s doing so far away from home ? Were the aircraft still actually owned by the airline at the time ?

The RAF 6 FTS from Finningley used to frequent Leeds Bradford during the 80s with the Jetstreams and Dominies; sometimes up to three a day. Nowadays it's the Cranwell B200s and not nearly as often. There is the occasional transport from Brize as well.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 16:07
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Originally Posted by Stan Woolley
For the 767 at Brits we did Zero Flight Time training. Experienced 737 pilots (1500 hrs?) could go straight from the sim on to passenger carrying aircraft. No problem at all.
As an ex-Brit sim engineer, thanks for the compliment!

Originally Posted by GGR155
RAF transport squadrons regularly carried out ILS approach and overshoots at several UK civilian airfields. Recall Britannia and VC10's at MAN.
Jetstreams, Dominies and C-130s were regular visitors to Cranfield. Plus, on one memorable occasion, a VC-10. These days it's just an occasional Chinook or Puma.

Last edited by Simtech; 10th Aug 2017 at 16:22.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 16:22
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Growing up in the village of Stansted Mountfitchet, my school holidays, more often than not, resulted in me jumping on my Puch 5-speed and cycling the 4 miles to the airport and loitering (as one could do quite freely in those days) with my CAM, bins, log book, air radio and salmon paste sandwiches, in various perch spots in and around the old terminal, carparks and grass viewing area.

Save the odd exotic 707 or DC-8 arrival for ATEL, Thurstons G-ASMY going round and round, Transmeridian (TAC) dispatching exotica around the globe in their diverse fleet, the comings and goings of the CAFU 748's and Ford 1-11's, it was always nice to enjoy the trials and tribulations of budding BA pilots being let loose on the big jets including 1-11's, Tridents, Tristars, 707's, VC-10's and 747's. I am sure the BAC Type 102 also made the odd training visit

I seem to recall Air Europe and Orion using Stansted for training during their early days

Very, very happy days.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 17:07
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Initial training on the DC-10 with Laker was at Stansted. In 1980, DC and I got our commands and the Company was trying to find time at a training airfield. DC made a couple of phone calls to old friends at Brize (we were not long off the Belfast) and so it was that we did our LHS touch and gos etc there (G-BBSZ 23.06.80).
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 18:07
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Monarch in the late 1970's did use, amongst no doubt other places, Bedford for circuits on the Boeing 720 B's
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 18:09
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Originally Posted by GGR155 View Post
RAF transport squadrons regularly carried out ILS approach and overshoots at several UK civilian airfields. Recall Britannia and VC10's at MAN.
Not just transport squadrons. Leuchars-based Lightnings could be seen on the ILS at Edinburgh from time to time.
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Old 10th Aug 2017, 18:17
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Way back in the sixties BEA used to do Viscount conversions at Luqa, Malta.
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Old 11th Aug 2017, 03:20
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Monarch did use Bedford and Stansted for their circuit training, but I was fortunate enough to join in the 78-79 winter which was quite severe, and so our training on the 1-11 had to be done down in Perpinan. What a lovely introduction to my new Airline, rubbish weather in the UK and absolutely perfect in Perpignan!

Last edited by Offchocks; 11th Aug 2017 at 06:42.
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Old 11th Aug 2017, 06:57
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I recall a Dan-Air 727 pounding the circuit at Gatwick one afternoon in the late 70s. Mind you, I think Gatwick was realtively quiet in the afternoons back then!
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Old 11th Aug 2017, 08:49
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Sims or not still happening at Newquay.

RAF A300Ms over North Cornwall fairly regularly.

Sunny day for a change yesterday and one over us several times in the afternoon heading to Newquay.

Individual sound for a big bird.
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Old 11th Aug 2017, 09:19
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In his 1971 autobiography, "When the Flag Drops" Jack Brabham recounts a journey to Cornwall in his newly bought Cessna. Unable to land in the field suggested by the person he was visiting, he flew to St. Mawgan (not knowing the radio frequencies) and tried to land there, only to find "there was a BOAC Boeing 707 landing and taking off and doing circuits and bumps". He reckoned there was a ninety degree crosswind and "the 707 was nearly shunted every time it hit the ground and almost scraped its wing on the tarmac". He eventually landed on the disused cross runway and had to wait while "two people came out and held the plane on the ground while I knocked the power off"!
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