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What is it about the Wessex that makes people so fond of it?

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What is it about the Wessex that makes people so fond of it?

Old 19th Jul 2012, 14:26
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Ah, cheers for clearing that up ST.
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Old 12th Nov 2012, 09:59
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Private Holden

Hi,
My father is Joseph Holden, the Private Holden that you mention in your post.
I have just started researching into what happened that day, as my father talks very little about it. I'd love to know if you have anymore pictures, or indeed if anyone reading this thread knew my father when he was in Aden.
Thank you so much for posting....
Lindsey
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Old 12th Nov 2012, 19:31
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Just to clarify Lindsey's post immediately above - it refers to my post about a fatal Wessex accident in the Radfan in 1964 (Post 263 on page 14). I'm in contact with the two surviving crew members out of the three on board - one passed away about 4 years ago - and am trying to find out more details of what happened that day for Lindsey. Her father was one of the survivors of the accident.
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Old 12th Nov 2012, 21:56
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C16
I see in that report that you mention the 'late Paul Kingston'. I knew him well many years ago but didn't know he had passed away; can you tell me when & why? Private email if you want.
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Old 13th Nov 2012, 05:53
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More Wessex ..


A 'White Top' Wessex (aka Green Parrot or Admiral's Barge), used for liaison duties by senior Royal Navy types and most probably a Mk V, departs Battersea Heliport in London on 17th August 1973 and overflys a 'parked' Hughes 300 (G-AXXD) belonging to Twyford Moors Helicopters

Given the year, one has to assume there is a possibility that PPRuNer Sandy Toad was at the helm of this 'barge'!

For a better shot of a Green Parrot check out post #166 on page 9 of this thread.
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Old 13th Nov 2012, 06:04
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The Hughes 269 G-AXXD was on contract with the Metropolitan Police when it stalled into the Thames whilst making a hurried exit from Battersea because Ted Heath [the Prime Minister] was coming into land at the heliport. No significant injuries involved.

There was never a specific report on the type the PM was travelling in so perhaps it was the Wessex?
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Old 14th Nov 2012, 03:33
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Green Parrot at Battersea

Sorry Savoia just before my time, I was still a Junglie with 848 NAS until end of October '73.
From the photo it looks as though the Hughes had dropped long before the Parrot flew over - unless he came back later to gloat over his prey!
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Old 14th Nov 2012, 04:48
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The police were doing their usual trick of selecting the cheapest option, they changed from Air Gregory at Denham to South Coast based Twyford Moors.... downgrading from 269C to 269B models that were a little challenged in the performance arena. This was a third performance related incident with the same helicopter in a week and it placed the Twyford Moors contract with the Metropolitan Police in jeopardy.

At 0740hrs the Hughes took off from Radlett piloted by John Evans and headed for Battersea Heliport where the helicopter landed normally at 0810hrs. The Hughes took off from Battersea without any problems arising. Unfortunately it had to return to the pad when the observer discovered that the police radio was inoperative. Once landed it was the work of only a few seconds to trace the fault to a loose connector.

As stated the second departure went wrong at 0845hrs.

About 30 yards downstream, 15 yards from the riverbank, G-AXXD hit the water heavily. It was fortunate that the tide was on the ebb. Amid much splintering of parts, the machine came to rest in 2 feet depth of flowing water.

A recovery team was brought in and by 1230hrs on a rising tide the shattered remains of the helicopter were clear of the river. The AAIB decided that AXXD was 50 pounds overweight for the temperature conditions that had crept up as the Hughes sat at Battersea.

So it seems that image of the Wessex was taken some time between 9am and Noon which tends to further suggest the likelihood that it was the h/c used on the Ted Heath flight.

Last edited by PANews; 14th Nov 2012 at 04:51. Reason: typos corrected
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Old 14th Nov 2012, 11:03
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Good sleuthing PA News. I checked the Battersea visitors book for that date but nothing recorded,probably because Heath had visited before and had already signed it.
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Old 14th Nov 2012, 11:50
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Heli1: If you have access to the Battersea visitors books would you be able (at some point) to post a selection of names and dates when notable/interesting visitors passed through (perhaps on the Nostalgia Thread)?

Would be much appreciated.
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Old 14th Nov 2012, 12:17
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heli1 - see my post here: http://www.pprune.org/rotorheads/419023-rotary-nostalgia-thread-86.html#post7519210
If I'm right and the G-AXXD incident was in 1974 not 1973 then it might explain the lack of Ted Heath's signature in the visitors book for the 1973 date.
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Old 14th Nov 2012, 16:25
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Hughes 269B G-AXXD

I have all three incidents listed as 1973

11.08.1973 Hughes 300B G-AXXD. Metropolitan Police, London. Twyford Moors hired helicopter. Exhaust bracket failure in flight resulting in forced landing at Kidbrook. No injuries.

13.08.1973 Hughes 300B G-AXXD. Metropolitan Police, London. Twyford Moors hired helicopter. Loss of control in cross-wind whilst landing at Radlett. Heavy landing but no damage or injuries.

17.08.1973 Hughes 300B G-AXXD. Metropolitan Police, London. Twyford Moors hired helicopter. Loss of power/lift in over-weight take off from Battersea Heliport resulting in crash landing into River Thames, airframe write-off and slight injury.

I do not have immediate access to the Evening Standard clipping for the dousing and just to confuse things the other stored image I have of AXXD on floats is a wrong wrong wrong 1975.....its going to be 1972 ....

1973.
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Old 15th Nov 2012, 09:01
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Hi Savoia...Nice thought to put names on thread but huge task.The book covers the first 20 years of the heliport from 1959 to 1978...with autographs of everyone from Duncan Sandys to Harold Wilson to Maggie Thatcher,Peter Sellers to Mick Jagger to Brian May and other famous celebrities,Radio One's Tony Blackburn and Pete Murray etc ,Miss World 1971 to Typist of The Year 1978, Jackie Stewart and other well known racing drivers and sportsmen , and foreign and UK Royals including Prince Charles etc etc.
The book is kept with various early documentation about the heliport plans and eventual development for the Helicopter Museum archive.
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Old 15th Nov 2012, 09:17
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Heli1: I shall try and make a visit to the museum on my next visit to Blighty.
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Old 15th Nov 2012, 17:15
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SASless

Thought the S58T incident at Teeside concerned Bill Oliver but my memory might not be as good as it should be.

TC
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Old 15th Nov 2012, 19:29
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TC,

Yes, you've restored my memory now: it was Bill Oliver
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Old 17th Dec 2012, 07:15
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RAF Westland Wessex HC2 XV724 at Bex in Switzerland in 1980 (Photo: Gerald Helmer)

Any assistance with identifying the Squadron to which this craft belongs would be much appreciated.
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Old 17th Dec 2012, 07:32
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Savoia,

Looks like No 18 (B) Sqn from RAF Gutersloh

Cheers
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Old 17th Dec 2012, 07:56
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Ah yes, 18, the Pegasus! Well done Chopper.

Now I recall that we have in fact 'dealt' with them before on this thread.

"With Courage and Faith"
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Old 18th Dec 2012, 15:29
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Having spent nearly four years on 18, I always thought 'animo et fide' meant 'Don't feed the animals'!!!
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