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UK Charter Airlines - how did crewing for the regional airports work ?

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UK Charter Airlines - how did crewing for the regional airports work ?

Old 9th Nov 2020, 15:02
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No MAN base for Orion crew early eighties, I would have jumped at one! All based EMA until later in the eighties, when a LGW base opened.
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Old 9th Nov 2020, 15:50
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Jn14:6 View Post
No MAN base for Orion crew early eighties, I would have jumped at one! All based EMA until later in the eighties, when a LGW base opened.
As a young ramp rat I took a keen interest in the cabin crew, and was sure cabin crew were MAN based - it was one of them that got me my job!
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Old 9th Nov 2020, 19:15
  #23 (permalink)  
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They didn't get much time to see the place but I'd love to know what the crews from the bigger, busier airports made of Leeds Bradford from the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s. It is far from brilliant now (new terminal needed) but back in the day it was small and basic with no Duty Free shop and a rather short runway! Still, fair play to Britannia for proving 737 ops were possible and for kick-starting the process.
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Old 10th Nov 2020, 13:42
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LBA was always, shall we say, interesting, and sometimes too exciting. There was almost always a crosswind, and often enough turbulence to shake your boots off. No duty free? Of no interest to crews, we were not entitled.
The runway in its short guise was often so limiting on RTOW that we would stage through LTN to uplift enough fuel to go further than, say, Palma. Though I do remember one day when everything fell the right way (strong wind down the runway at LBA, strong tailwind for most of the distance) when I managed to go direct to Monastir with a full load in a B737-200.
One of the less endearing attributes of RW32 was the undulations. If you floated past the proper touchdown point, you would float a long way because of the humps and dips; not a nice thing to do.
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Old 10th Nov 2020, 13:55
  #25 (permalink)  
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RW32/14 was extended 36 years ago. The newer part is flat although close enough to The Chevin for that to be an operational hindrance. The original part is as undulating as ever and has had umpteen repairs. Even driving a tug on the runway is uncomfortable.

I didn't expect aircrew to have access to duty free. I simply mentioned it to illustrate the lack of facilities at LBA during its formative years.
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Old 10th Nov 2020, 15:56
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I seem to remember Leeds was very similar to Bristol with the same problems when landing a B737-200.
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Old 10th Nov 2020, 15:58
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I would have thought an airport with no duty free would be more attractive to the charter cabin crews, it would increase their chances of sales on the aircraft.
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Old 10th Nov 2020, 16:20
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
I would have thought an airport with no duty free would be more attractive to the charter cabin crews, it would increase their chances of sales on the aircraft.
It would certainly have been a benefit for ground handling staff - many a time we had to send people to scour duty free for missing pax so we could make an on-time departure ("No need to rush Mabel, they won't go without us....")
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Old 11th Nov 2020, 12:41
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I too have wondered how operators crewed where they had a series one summer, then a different operator took it the next year. Doing so at some of the secondary UK points seemed difficult enough, eg Court Line operating out of Bristol for just one or two years, but Berlin must have been a considerable challenge, and yet a series of operators moved in and out of there - Dan-Air, Laker, Channel, Monarch, and others.

I suspect pilots stuck with the airline, but did local cabin crew move around between them as contracts were gained and lost ?
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Old 12th Nov 2020, 09:32
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I joined AE at the start, Feb 1979 because they asserted that they intended to operate only three 737's, forever, and work only for Intasun, forever and be based at Gatters, forever. One year later, I was in the back of a cab heading for Cardiff on the start of a "W" pattern that took me away from home for six days.

Years later, long haul, crewing through Bangor, Maine, seven days hotac'd up at the Holiday Inn and going up & down East -coast America was normal. I suggested we open a transit Base at Bangor & make me Base Captain where I would live , forever. Chief Pilot used to fall about laughing every time he saw me.

Brakedwell : Got me welling up again ! Blimey, those AE crews look damn young.
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Old 12th Nov 2020, 10:08
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We all were then, weren't we Gordon?
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Old 12th Nov 2020, 18:32
  #32 (permalink)  
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Luckily we in Britannia only used B767s for Florida or places like Cancun trips so I never had to tech stop so never had the pleasure of meeting Gordomac in Bangor.
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Old 13th Nov 2020, 05:04
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Noticed the Queenair commander has placed the attractive young hostess in the co-pilot seat, for weight and balance purposes!
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Old 13th Nov 2020, 06:36
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Originally Posted by Stationair8 View Post
Noticed the Queenair commander has placed the attractive young hostess in the co-pilot seat, for weight and balance purposes!
Not quite right, the rest of us were too scared to sit in that seat!

Last edited by brakedwell; 13th Nov 2020 at 07:00.
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Old 13th Nov 2020, 06:47
  #35 (permalink)  
 
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I actually thought that was an FO !
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Old 13th Nov 2020, 09:47
  #36 (permalink)  
 
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Mooncrest ; See what you've started ? Us ole codgers creeping the thread , a bit, but it's still nostalgic.
Gypo ; Shame. You would have found me playing drums at Dick Stacey's in Brewer and I would have been delighted to buy you a cold one.
On thread though Mooncrest, you will have got your answer. It was a crewing nightmare and most operators seemed to settle for a combination of "w" patterns with local Bases too. Mostly, it seemed to be local CC rather than a full-on Base. Managers didn't favour seperate Bases because they felt it gave them lack of control.

In my really early days as an Ops Duty Officer for BIA we had bases at LGW, Blackpool, and Channel Islands. It all got really mixed up in the fog season. A real crewing nightmare.

In my latter days, "Based" in Bahrain but operating Bahrain-CDG-Manch. Min-rest in the Excelsior Hotel at Manch airport & then in the back of a coach for heaven's sake to LHR next day. Looked out of the window as we coached down the M6 I mused " cripes, joined GF to get away from all this ".
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Old 13th Nov 2020, 10:27
  #37 (permalink)  
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Anytime Gordo.
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Old 15th Nov 2020, 16:12
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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Might as well join in the memory trail ..
Feb '69 was the 1st time I'd ever met an airline crew . Me , 16 going across and up , across and up ...
Norfolk to Aberdovey to the Outward Bound Sea School by British Rail . BCAL crew in uniform across the aisle ; alighting in Coventry or BHX . Cannot remember which !
20 years on , me sneaking home by rail from BHX after an FDP , uniform well disguised .
Hallmark transport rings a pleasant bell . No competition was crew transport from LTN to 'The Noke' by the M1 . Leyland trannie van rusting and rattling down M1 . Same age as the 25yrs old Tristars we were flying , and 25yr old Court Line Bedford TK steps at LTN .
When we got to Carribbean , via Santa Maria or Holiday Inn Bangor ! Crew trans.. could be a Bandit for the 15 of us .... But the c/c baggage would have to go ahead in a Twin Cessna [ 404 , 414 ] . 'Tho one memorable roster change was even older than the LTN ones . A 30 yr old Learjet for the 3 flight deck .. Greneda , St Juan , Orlando [ Sanford ] .. did not quite compensate for 4 days on the beach 'tho .

Sky gypsies indeed we were .

rgds condor .
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Old 31st Aug 2021, 20:51
  #39 (permalink)  
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SkyService, the Canadian charter outfit, had several years of basing A320s in the UK to operate Airtours summer flights. Leeds Bradford and Teesside were two such bases. The cabin crew were recruited and based locally but the pilots came over from Canada on, I think, three month stints. I believe they were put up in rented houses and apartments rather than spending months in hotels. I don't know how they fared for transport - they could well have been supplied with hire cars for the duration of their stay - but I know of one SkyService pilot who won a Rover 75 in a newspaper competition whilst he was here. I don't know if he took it back to Canada with him!
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