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Bristow Photos

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Bristow Photos

Old 19th Jan 2014, 07:57
  #2261 (permalink)  
 
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Got mine in the states m'lud.....
I have however seen some real life helos patched up with similar type sellotape and put out on the line
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Old 19th Jan 2014, 09:27
  #2262 (permalink)  
 
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Aberdeen

Aberdeen 1






I have probably posted a few of these 31 pics before but this will add all the straggler pics and a few people.
As usual the info is a bit dated and things have probably moved on a bit!





At its peak the Bristows base at Aberdeen was probably the largest commercial helicopter operation in the world.
Located
on the East coast of Scotland, Aberdeen airport was chosen as a base to serve the booming North Sea oil fields, and if my sources are correct, the first flight took place on July 26th 1967 with a Whirlwind WS55 flight out to the Hambros rig.



This picture was probably taken around 1990 and shows the three main hangar complexes and terminal building. Being based at a commercial airport enables offshore workers to fly in from their home airports and transfer smoothly to the rig flights.








28 aircraft can be counted in this photo with the A.S.332L Super Pumas dominating the proceedings with a fleet of approx. 22 in 1989. Many modifications were made to the Super Pumas to bring them up to the Bristow standard and this led to the nickname "Tiger" being adopted.







Again a "Tiger" trying to hog the limelight with a few S61Ns and a S76 in the background. Over the years most of the larger Bristows types have operated out of Aberdeen i.e. ( Whirlwinds, Wessex, Puma, Bell 212, Bell 214ST, S61, S76 and Tigers ).





The Bristow terminal is more akin to a regular airport departure lounge with check-in desks, snack bar, a news stand, security and custom services, offices for customer representatives and video lounges ( for safety briefings ) and in 1989 was handling 40,000 passengers every month.




At its peak, approximately, 45 medium / large helicopters were operating out of Aberdeen averaging 50 - 60 flights per day and a record of 86 flights one Christmas.
The installation shown is a typical North sea rig served by the Bristow fleet and when the "Tigers" were introduced a direct flight to the Magnus oil field was made possible creating a leg of approx. 280nm.







This map shows the U.K. sector Northern North Sea oil fields the majority of which were served from Aberdeen by one of the two big helicopter operators, Bristows and Scotia.






Inevitably, as exploration slowed, offshore shift changes reduced, new installations with fewer workers etc. etc., the requirement for aircraft reduced, which has led to the "down-sizing" of the operation. It is unlikely there will ever be a base as busy as Aberdeen was in its heyday and maintaining such a high quality service in the face of some of the most hostile weather conditions in the offshore arena is a credit to the staff that have manned the base over the last 40+ years.



















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Old 19th Jan 2014, 09:41
  #2263 (permalink)  
 
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Aberdeen

Aberdeen 2


































































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Old 19th Jan 2014, 09:48
  #2264 (permalink)  
 
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Aberdeen

Aberdeen People





























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Old 19th Jan 2014, 16:40
  #2265 (permalink)  
 
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Beryl 'A'

Beryl 'A', North Sea


A fairly short term contract based on the Mobil offshore rig Beryl 'A' providing inter-rig shuttling and SAR cover.
Operational January - June 1988.

A nice shot of the Beryl 'A', the accommodation being below the helideck.
Work rota 2 weeks on - 2 weeks off.






Just the one machine involved - Bell 212.
G-BIXV seen here on the pad with Graham Conway.






There was no hangar on the rig and the aircraft was pushed to one side to make room for other visiting aircraft. Minor maintenance could be
carried out on the rig but anything that involved better facilities was carried out at Unst.



















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Old 20th Jan 2014, 17:27
  #2266 (permalink)  
 
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Channel Islands

Channel Islands






For a time The Channel Islands used to be the most the common detachment for Bristow engineers based at Redhill including myself who spent a leisurely weekend ( 9-10 Feb 2002 ) on Guernsey sorting out a weather radar defect on the corporate S76 below.


A common visitor to Redhill, G-BYDF was based in the Channel Islands but was supported by Bristows Redhill.





As I mentioned above I was in Guernsey working in the Aigle hangar being assisted by Roger Sweet who had been working at the airport for twenty eight years and can remember a number of occasions when Bristows operated around the Islands. He provided the pictures and info below.


On Christmas day 1973 any surfers in the water would have been surprised to have been joined by the huge cargo ship, Elwood Mead, which ran aground on one of the offshore reefs, west of Guernsey on her maiden voyage from Australia. She remained stuck for 61 days before being refloated.Bristow Wessex G-ATBY assisted in the salvage operation.








Now we might need confirmation on the two Widgeon Pictures. They are not in Bristows colours but Roger thinks they were Bristow operated, delivering items such as newspapers around the Islands - only for a short time though. This one is G-ANAL!!! Probably not a registration you would choose today.







As above but registration G-AOAJ.






Other Bristow aircraft seen at Guernsey include:

August 1972 - Wessex G-ATCA - hauling cement out to a damaged sea beacon.



February 1973 - S61 G-AZRF - mission unknown.


December 1975 - S61 G-BAKB - mission unknown.

December 1985 - AS332Ls G-BMCX and BMCY - Crew training Japanese military pilots - a summit meeting was going to take place in Japan and heads of state, including Maggie Thatcher, were to be ferried around in Super Pumas.

February 1987 - S76 G-BISZ - Crew change on oil rig "West Vision" which was being towed up the Channel. New crew flown in from Norway to Guernsey and "old" crew flown back in Convair 580.
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Old 20th Jan 2014, 18:09
  #2267 (permalink)  
 
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Oops ...not Widgeons above but Dragonflys.More on these to follow once I check the histories but I know G-ANAL was re registered ,for obvious reason!
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Old 20th Jan 2014, 21:24
  #2268 (permalink)  
 
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Would have thought several big name Rock Stars would have leaped at the Registration or has the CAA retained for their very own?
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 07:22
  #2269 (permalink)  
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Would have thought several big name Rock Stars would have leaped at the Registration or has the CAA retained for their very own?
I know this is tongue in cheek but, in the uk, once a registration has been used by one aircraft it can't be used by another. although each aircraft can be re-registered with as many identities as you like each previous registration is retained for it's sole use.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 12:52
  #2270 (permalink)  
 
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The CAA and its Rules.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 12:55
  #2271 (permalink)  
 
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Now I've checked it doesn't seem either of the Dragonflys were operated by Bristow.
G-ANAL ( later G-ANZL ) was registered to the Evening Standard in June 1953 and maintained at Blackbushe by Silver City. It was re registered in March 55 which helps date the photo.

G-AOAJ was built in April 55 ,retained by Westland for their training school and written off in October 56.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 13:14
  #2272 (permalink)  
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There is a reference to G-ANAL in the book "Leading From the Front" but it merely states that Alan Green flew it on publicity stunts for the Evening Standard & used it to bulk deliver newspapers. There is no reference to it being owned or operated by Bristow although there is a photo of it.
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Old 21st Jan 2014, 15:22
  #2273 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Tail-take-off View Post
..... but it merely states that Alan Green flew it on publicity stunts for the Evening Standard .......
Alan Green interviewed me at Redhill when I went for an interview for a flying job with Bristow in the summer of 1965, three years before I left the military. He offered me a £500 retainer if I agreed to join them when I was a civvie plus a salary of (I think) around £1800 per annum. How times have changed!
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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 13:37
  #2274 (permalink)  
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R.I.P. Jean-Christophe Vuylsteke

Captain Jean-Christophe Vuylsteke passed away on Saturday 18th January 2014.

Jean-Christophe was a highly respected and valued Line Training Captain who has been a member of the Bristow team for many years. Jean-Christophe joined the Company as a Cadet at Redhill and has supported Bristow’s operations around the world, most recently in Scatsta as an S92 Line Training Captain.

Jean-Christophe will be sorely missed by all his friends and colleagues at Bristow.

The funeral is being held on Saturday 25th January 2014, 10.30am, at the Church Saint Georges, Place Ernest Dubois 2, 1390 Grez-Doiceau (around 40km from Brussels).



Jean-Christophe (far right)
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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 13:43
  #2275 (permalink)  
 
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Sad news......taken way too young!
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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 17:30
  #2276 (permalink)  
 
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R.I.P. Babee
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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 17:32
  #2277 (permalink)  
 
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Sorry to hear about Jean. I worked with Jean at Texaco Warri back in 89 and he was a real character. I will remember him for always being light hearted and both of us restoring Nortons in his house. As a real adventure, we drove an old VW beetle to Benin city from Warri to get parts for the bikes, something you would never do today.

I met him again briefly at Scatsta and he was just the same displaying humour as always.

Sorry to read that he has departed, you always think you will see colleagues again, but this comes as a shock to me. As was said, taken too young.

Last edited by Ikoyian; 24th Jan 2014 at 12:22.
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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 17:51
  #2278 (permalink)  
 
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Brands Hatch/Silverstone

Brands Hatch/Silverstone





For one day every year, Silverstone becomes the U.K's busiest heliport as thousands flock to see the British Grand Prix. To avoid the horrendous traffic congestion many people take a short hop to the track by helicopter. Bristows have supplied numerous aircraft over the years including Bell 206s, S-76s, S-61s, Tigers and 214STs.
Not sure whether this is still the case.


An S61, Tiger and two S76s can be made out in this photo taken at the circuit.




One of the satellite landing areas.
The local residents are appeased by offering a guided tour of a Tiger.












Before Silverstone, the British Grand Prix was held at Brands Hatch and due to better road access, helicopter transfers were far fewer.
However Bristows did have a presence in the form of a casevac Tiger as can be seen in these pictures.

My sources tell me that this aircraft airlifted Jaques Lafitte to hospital after a serious crash.








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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 20:27
  #2279 (permalink)  
 
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We did a shuttle with a 76 in the last year of Brands Hatch because I flew it with Dave Duncan.

The first year at Silverstone was a small, up to 76/WG30 size on the northern side. The circuit was packed with R22s up to Hughes 500s and the best place to view the approach was from behind a truck. I loss count of the avoiding actions I had to take. I can remember James Hunt, with a dollybird om each arm, asking me to fly him back to his hotel.

The following year was bigger with S61s and the specialist heavy airstrip. We were accommodated in Lawrence Bristow’s old boarding school and we slept in dormitories in 5’6” beds designed for fourteen-year-olds.

The next year was even bigger with Tigers and 214s as well. At the end of the day we all ended up at Newcastle Airport Hotel. Aberdeen were having trouble manning the next days’ flying programme so it was faxed down to Newcastle where the Chief Pilot and Operations Manager worked out the programming late at night detailing the crews for the early morning take offs.

I always used to watch the race on a television set. Watching supersonic streamlined roller skates hurtling around the track got a bit boring when you didn’t know who was where.

Last edited by Fareastdriver; 23rd Jan 2014 at 21:58.
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Old 23rd Jan 2014, 22:12
  #2280 (permalink)  
 
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"J C Volestrangler" came to North Denes straight out of the Redhill HP Course as the Great Yarmouth Amoco Bell 212s were going to 2 Pilot Ops.

Of course, he was an instant professional and personal hit. There will be many who will miss him and his humour and big smile. How very sad.

Last edited by terminus mos; 24th Jan 2014 at 12:24.
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