Airport Diary 1960 - 2011
1960 - 1980 From Boom to Bust 1960: East Anglian Flying Services add two Douglas DC3 Dakota’s to the fleet. 1960: ATEL buy DC-4 G-ANYB the aircraft is wheeled into the "Black Shed". 1960: Fred Olsen Line operate their Douglas C46 Commando out of the airport. 1960: Channel Air Bridge & Air Charter merge to become British United Airways. February 1960: Catalina flying boat G-APZA reported to be owned by TV personality Hughie Green flew in to the airport. November 1960: Catalina G-APZA scrapped. Saturday 13th May 1961: The birth of the Carvair. The first Aviation Traders ATL98 Carvair is rolled out of the "black sheds" in an uncompleted state, the engines, outer wings, flight controls and a few other parts were still to be fitted. The Carvair was designed from the Douglas C54. The Carvair got its name from what it was designed to do carry cars via air, the only problems that arose from the project was how to get the cars in to the aircraft, this was solved by ATEL designing the HY-LO-LIFT. Regular flight carrying cars and passengers were now set up going to such place's as Basle, Geneva and Strasbourg cargo flight to Africa were also now a possibility. Tuesday 20th June 1961: Carvair Hops! Carvair G-ANYB was completed and ready to begin engine and taxiing and flight trials, however a delay in paperwork meant that the Carvair would not be allowed to fly so was restricted to taxiing, during the afternoon, a high speed trial was planned as the Carvair ran up to power on the runway, the breaks were released and the aircraft lurched forward as the speed build the aircraft lifted off the ground the crew quickly returned to the ground and taxied back to its hanger. Wednesday 21st June 1961: First flight of the Aviation Traders ATL98 Carvair. The aircraft now had a large bulbous forward fuselage section, a taller tail and a raised cockpit. The flight testing of the aircraft continued with few problems encountered, however, on one test flight out of Southend necessitated an emergency landing back at the airport, Yankee-Bravo was taking off on a stall test flight, full power, full flaps, undercarriage down full rudder was applied at which point the fin became fully stalled, however unlike previous stall testing a noticeable pre-still buffeting was felt, this pushed the aircraft into a full stall, the stall was recovered by the pilot dropping the nose, raising the gear and flaps, it was at this point that a number of loud bangs were heard from just behind the pilot. Yankee-bravo was immediately bought back in and was taxed back to her hanger, upon inspection it was found that the banging was magazine of a camera set up to take pictures of the observers panel, it had broken free of its rubber bungee and had been snapping from one side of the fuselage to the other. Another snag that was found was that the nose leg would retract beyond the desired up position, Yankie-Bravo was regally seen flying over Southend with the main gear up but the nose leg locked in the down position, the problem was rectified with the fitting of a steel collar to the nose gear screw retractor. Following their work converting DC4's into Carvair's ATEL started converting ex BEA Vanguards into pure fright airliners, which they named Merchantman. Friday 23rd June 1961: The forth flight of the Carvair and the first publicity flight for the MoD. Tuesday 27th June 1961: Carvair Yankee-Bravo first flight with landing away from Southend. The aircraft flew in to Filton for calibration and Pitot position error correction. July 1961: East Anglian Flying Services increase flights between Southend and Ostend to 70 per week. Sunday 23rd July 1961: Carvair Accident. A major set back hits the Carvair programme when whilst sitting out-side its hanger Yankee-Bravo is struck by a fork lift-truck, it had collided with the leading edge of the port tail-plane, further examination of the airframe discovered that the tail section had been partly severed by the force of the impact. This accident saw the aircraft grounded whilst further examination of the aircraft took place, had the aircraft been written-off the entire project would have needed to be re-started, in which case a review would have been carried out to see if the project was feasible, if it was found that the costs of re-launching the project from scratch were too high the Carvair programme would have been abandoned. Fortunately it was found that Yankee-Bravo could be repaired, the engineers immediately set upon getting her back into shape. The work took the rest of July all of August and into September, once the work was complete the aircraft flew back to Filton where she undertook Max weight take off trials returning to Southend on the 23rd October for further work. Monday 30th October 1961: Carvair Yankee-Bravo returns to Filton. Thursday 23rd November 1961: Carvair Yankee-Bravo returns to Southend to complete trials. 1961-1962: The longest flight ever to be operated Southend-Adelaide, Australia. The service was by a Douglas DC6 and was operated by the Ministry of Aviation it was used to ferry personnel and equipment out to the Woomera Rocket Testing Range, the “pit stop” route saw regular landings for refuelling and to give the crew and passengers a break from the flight. 1962: Marathon M.60 HPR 128 G-AMGX (VR-NAO) Scrapped January 1962: The Carvair completes its test flight trials. January 1962: British United Airways take over Silver City Airways. Saturday 10th February 1962: The certification flight of the Carvair by the Air Registration Board. Sunday 11th February 1962: The first two commercial pilots gain type approval both fly for the first company to buy the aircraft Channel Air Bridge. Monday 12th February 1962: A second check out flight takes off from Southend as the aircraft becomes airborne No3 engine fails the aircraft makes a perfect three engine landing back at the airport. Tuesday 13th February 1962: Carvair Yankee-Bravo has its engine changed and test flown. Friday 16th February 1962: Carvair Yankee-Bravo enters service with Channel Air Bridge on the Southend-Ostend route, the trip took 45 minutes with special guests including the Swiss Ambassador on board. Saturday 17th February 1962: The first true revenue flight of the Carvair A "Deep Penetration" flight from Southend to Malaga, Spain this was a charter by Ford. The aircraft was scheduled to return the same day but a failure of one of the hydraulic pumps saw the aircraft return on the 19th February 1962, the Carvair could quite safely fly with just one pump running, upon return to Southend the aircraft was grounded until a through check could be undertaken the aircraft returned to the air on the 28th February1962. Despite the Carvair is regarded as Southend’s airliner all but three were built at Stansted. This was done as there was more space there for the storage of aircraft awaiting conversion. However, the front fuselage sections, ancillary components, door cills and furnishings were all built at Southend. These were ferried to Stansted by specially built road trailer that once loaded with a nose section was 19ft 6 inch high. During the construction of the Stansted airframes it was found that the cockpit windows were needing to be converted further, so Aviation traders began searching for components, a DC4 fuselage was found in Schipol it was owned by KLM, Aviation Traders put an offer in for it but, KLM knowing how important it was kept upping the price until it was far beyond its true worth, but Aviation traders needed the glazing so much they had to buy it, the fuselage was shipped to England. Eventually Aviation traders were able to find a large quantity of C54 spares including the much- needed windscreens and frames. Once the nose section was attached to the fuselage all the Carvairs were flown to Southend for fitting out. October 1962: Handley Page HP-81 Hermes G-ALDU Scrapped. Thursday 25th October 1962: East Anglian Flying Services becomes Channel Airways and adds a Vickers Viscount Srs707 to the fleet. Friday 28th December 1962: Carvair G-ARSF crash. ATL98 Carvair G-ARSF was the third production aircraft it was on the Southend - Rotterdam route The aircraft was on its final decent on to runway 24 at Zestiehoven Airport at 11:00am there were 14 passengers 4 crew and four cars on board. The weather was deteriorating with visibility at almost zero in near white-out conditions to make matters worse there was also a heavy snow falling, the airport turned the runway lighting up to full intensity but the snow covering them was not cleared away. Sierra-Romeo's approach was too low which resulted in the aircraft hitting an 6ft high perimeter dyke some 800ft short of the runway. The aircraft was thrown back into the air before falling back to earth 200ft further on, the starboard wing was torn off, which resulted in the aircraft rolling on to its right-side, it slew for another 700 feet slowly rolling onto its back before coming to a rest facing the way it was originally going, with the fuel tanks ruptured the Avgas was spilling from the aircraft, luckily for those on board the snow soaked up the fuel. The flight deck was crushed, and despite his injury's the pilot requested the passengers be rescued first, the stewardess reported that all the passengers were fine, albeit hanging upside down in their seats. The passengers were rescued and given medical checks and they continued their journey. The flight crew were all taken to hospital & with the exception of the co-pilot who was suffering from shock and the pilot who had died all were released. Once rescue crews reached the cargo hold they found the cars suspended above them, and despite the fuel leaking out from the tanks and batteries, minor damage to the body work and the suspension (the tie down points) all could have been driven off. Sierra-foxtrot was removed from the Air register on the 5th February 1963 just 7 months after first flying as a Carvair. Monday 31st December 1962: Channel Airways take over Southend based Tradair. Tuesday 1st January 1963: British United Air Ferries launched from the merger of Silver City and British United Airways. Monday 20th May 1963: BKS bought Ambassador G-ALZR for all cargo operation. The conversion of the Ambassador saw the cutting of a double door with an opening of 7' 11" wide by 6' 6" high, with a mean sill height of 3' 6". To complicate things the aircraft had been in use by Rolls Royce as a test bed aircraft, it had been converted from its traditional Bristol Centaurus engines to the Dart Turboprop's, BKS had to revert back to its original power plants before the work on the door could begin. The cargo conversion was altered so that the aircraft could carry horses, this was done so that the current Bristol B170 Freighter in use could be retired, the first flight of the horse carrying ambassador took place on the 26th November 1964 18 months after arriving. 1964: Southend Municipal Flying School closed. In the 17 years the Municipal Flying School operated 400 pilots graduated from it. 1964: Channel Airways buy the BEA fleet of Vickers Viscounts. 1964: A Secret Agent Arrives... James Bonds third outing saw a sequence filmed at Southend Airport, James Bond played by Sean Connery sat in his Aston Martin DB5 whilst his rival Goldfingers’ car a 1934 Rolls Royce Phantom 320 is loaded on to a ATL98 carvair 1964: The Rochford Hundred Flying Group set up with Auster 5D G-ANHX. 1964: Douglas C-47B-5-DK Dakota G-ALXN (G-37-1, KJ934, 43-48845) scrapped X-Ray November had been fitted with Rolls Royce Darts in 1951 but the scheme failed and the original R-1830’s were refitted. The aircraft had been withdrawn from use at Southend on 18th June 1963. May 1964: Bristol B170 Superfreighter G-AIME scrapped. October 1964: Bristol B170 Freighter G-AIFM Scrapped. 1965: Bristol B170 Superfreighter Mk21E G-AICT scrapped. 1965: ATEL started work converting the Bristol Britannia to all fright configuration this included cutting a large freight door in the forward fuselage. Monday 4th January 1965: Last Channel Airways passenger flight of the Vickers Viking Basle-Southend. Sunday 18th July 1965: Pedal Power! The Southend man powered flight group rolled out their man-powered aircraft from its hanger, it was towed on to the runway and the two-man crew got in and started to pedal. The aircraft travelled 600 yards along the runway at an average speed of 15mph when a pin broke and the aircraft became impossible to control and the attempt was abandoned. Tuesday 28th September 1965: Bristol Britannia 102 G-ANBH (BOAC) Withdrawn from use Thursday 7th October 1965: Bristol B170 Superfreighter Mk21E G-AICT made its last flight. November 1965: Bristol B170 Freighter G-AHJI Scrapped. 1966: The first visit to the airport by a BAC1-11. 1966: British United Air Ferries separate From British United Airways they change name to British Air Ferries. 1966: Channel Airways add Vickers Viscount Srs 812 and a Hawker Siddeley HS 748 to the fleet. 1966: British Air Ferries who at the time were based in London with just a small operating base at Southend decided to move all operations to Southend. it's entire fleet of ATL 98 Carvairs were based at Southend with the Bristol Freighters operating out of Lydd. 1966: The last BAF/BUAF Bristol 170 Frieighter flights leave the airport. February 1966: De Havilland Dove 1b G-ANVC (VR-NIT/AP-AGT/XY-ADI) Scrapped. Sunday 8th March 1966: Southend Airshow. Centenary of the Royal Aeronautical Society (formed 12th January 1866). To mark the occasion the Southend branch of the R.A.e.S planed an exhibition it was to be the biggest exhibition and air-display ever seen in the area, sadly the weather prevented much of the flying display from taking place. Total of 10,000 people came to the event, the hangers of ATEL were used for the exhibition, once the weather cleared joy-flights over the town and seafront were arranged, during the day an R.A.F Vulcan made a touch and go and an R.A.F Phantom made a low level fly past. Wednesday 23rd March 1966: British United Air Ferries launched a new circular route Southend - Rotterdam - Manchester - Rotterdam - Southend. Sunday 8th May 1966: Aeronautical Exhibition held in the Aviation Traders hangers. 1967: Sheila Scott round the world pilot flew her Pipper Commanche N8893P into the airport. 1967: British Historic Aircraft Museum. The British Historic Aircraft Museum moved from Biggin Hill. Once the museum's aircraft were on the airport the first public meeting was held for the proposed Historic Aircraft Museum, Director General A. J. Tony Osborne announced there would be at least 26 aircraft on the four-acre site. Tony Osborne bought Miles Hawk Six G-ADGP (now in New Zealand) for racing and for the proposed museum. A number of other aircraft were purchased for the museum including: North American Mitchell HD368 and DH Drover VH-FDT/G-APXX. 1967: Last Scheduled Bristol 170 Freighter flight takes place. Tuesday 14th March 1967: Avro Anson TX211 flew in for the proposed museum from Shawbury as it landed one of the engines failed. Saturday 18th March 1967: Percival Proctor G-AOBW arrived by road at the museum compound. April 1967: Bristol B170 Freighter G-AMWD Scrapped. May 1967: Hawker Sea Fury WJ288 arrived by road at the museum compound on the Eastern side of the airport. Wednesday 3rd May 1967: Vickers Viscount 812 G-AVJZ crash. Vickers Viscount G-AVJZ had just completed a major service and was undertaking a re-certification flight the aircraft was on take off when it uncontrollably swung off runway 24 the starboard wing tip connected the ground the aircraft crashed into a fenced off compound immediately catching fire, destroying the port wing and most of the front fuselage down to floor level, port tail-plane torn off, three engines torn off, outer part of starboard wing torn off, undercarriage forced back into the wing. Tuesday 9th May 1967: Avro Lincoln RF343/G-APRJ of Napier's made her last flight after being donated to the proposed museum. Saturday 20th May 1967: Hawker Sea Hawk XE489 arrived by road at the museum compound. Monday 26th June 1967: Channel Airways enter the jet age with their first BAC 111—400 operating a Southend-Palma service, other services also operated to Ibiza, Malaga and Tangier. Sunday 1st October 1967: British United Air Ferries becomes British Air Ferries it is part of Air Holdings Limited. 1968: Vickers Vanguard 951 G-APEM flew in for Aviation traders to convert to Merchantman via added a large cargo door at the front of the fuselage. 1968: CASA 2.111 & G-AWHA & Spitfire G-AVDJ flew into the airport whilst filming the Battle of Britain film. 1968: Miles Monarch G-AFLW, Aeronca G-AVDJ, Pussmoth, 2 Hornet Moths, Luton Minor, Messenger, Tipsy Belfair fly into the airport for historical exhibition. Sunday 24th March 1968: Open day & Airshow. The airport held an open-day the event was to commemorate two anniversary's, one being the golden jubilee of the R.A.F and the other being the 21st anniversary of the post war airport. The event was a tremendous success it was opened at 2:00pm by a Wittering based 100sqn R.A.F Victor bomber making a touch and go. Other aircraft included the Spitfires & Hurricanes of the BBMF, Air Sea Rescue demonstration, Lightning, Shackleton, Dominie (HS125), R.A.F Falcons, The unique Reid and Sigrist Desford G-AGOS and a number of other historic aircraft flew in to the airport and gave displays throughout the day the event drew a crowed of over 50,000. The organisers of the proposed museum also put on display their aircraft, but as time went on the project was beginning to lose momentum until it collapsed completely. Monday 25th March 1968: German Luftwaffe Nord Nortlas GB+102 visits the airport. Saturday 4th May 1968: Vickers Viscount 812 G-APPU crash landing. Vickers Viscount 812 (c/n364) G-APPU went off the end of runway 06 due to lack of breaking and too greater speed on a wet runway it hit the bank and rode up over this and down the other side, damage to the aircraft displaced landing gear, the ruptured port wing deflected up with the starboard extended over the up line, all the propellers were damaged with Nos 2 and 4 torn from their engines, both the starboard engines were torn from the aircraft, No4 engine and propeller ended up on the down line, the nose and fuselage sustained heavy blow on the starboard side, the nose-wheel bay structure and nose fuselage were displaced and torn from the front of the cockpit floor was crushed, pushed upwards and buckled, fuselage skin & supporting structure had buckled in compression on the port side at the forward end of the passenger cabin. August 1968: De Havilland Dove G-AKJR (AP-AGJ) Scrapped. Tuesday 3rd September 1968: Airspeed Ambassador G-AMAC of BKS (ex-BEA) flew into the airport for storage. Friday 16th September 1968: RAF Sycamore XG544 make one of the types last visits to Southend. 1969: Channel Airways begin operating two De Havilland Trident 1e/140s. Monday 20th January 1969: Channel Airways launch the “Scottish Flyer” service calling at Portsmouth-Southend-Luton-East Midlands-Leeds-Bradford-Teeside-Newcastle-Edinburgh-Aberdeen. The Viscounts operating the cross country service were fitted with extra batteries so that more starts could be preformed without the need of relying on ground equipment. March 1969: Airspeed Ambassador G-AMAC Broken up June 1969: Vickers Viscount 806 G-AOYR (BEA) Scrapped. July 1969: The Rochford Hundred Flying Group sell Auster G-ANHX. They acquire Auster J/5b Autocar G-AMFP, for eighteen years out of the previous twenty FP had been based on the airport, both with Aviation Traders and the Southend Corporation, who employed the aircraft as a joy flights aircraft on trips along the sea front, sadly the aircraft was destroyed in a non-fatal crash in the Jura mountains on 10th August 1972, whilst on a transit flight between Geneva & Macon. Druine D.26b Condor G-AWSR was leased as a replacement. September 1969: Bristol 175 Britannia G-ANBH BKS Air Transport scrapped. Friday 28th November 1969: Channel Airways scrap the “Scottish Flyer” service. 1970: First visit to the airport by a Boeing 737 (Britannia Airways G-AXNA) on a freight flight. January 1970: Vickers Viscount 707 (c/n34) G-APZL (EI-AGI) of Channel Airways scrapped. March 1970: Vickers Viscount 707 (c/n30) G-APLB (EI-AFV) of Channel Airways scrapped. March 1970: Vickers Viscount 720 (c/n47) VH-TVD of Flight Spares scrapped. March 1970: Vickers Viscount 720 (c/n49) VH-TVF of Flight Spares scrapped. March 1970: Vickers Viscount 720 (c/n71) G-APTA (VP-BBW, VP-TDK) of Channel Airways scrapped. April 1970: De Havilland Dove 1b G-AJBI (XY-ACE/AP-AFT/AP-AHC/XY-ACE) Scrapped. April 1970: De Havilland Dove G-AOBZ (VR-NIL) Scrapped. Sunday 26th April 1970: Southend Airshow 1970. The event was held in aid of RAF Benevolent Fund and selected local charities the display included; Aerobatic display by RAF Lightning, RAF Support command, RAF Falcons, RAF Red Arrows, Gliding Display, Banner snatch by Percival Prentice, Tiger Moth, Neville Brownings Flying Circus, The Vintage Aircraft Flying Club, Aerobatic Spitfire G-AIDN. May 1970: Bristol Britannia 102 (c/n12905) G-AWBD BKS Air Transport scrapped. Saturday 31st October 1970: The name BKS passed into history as it became wholly owned by BEA, the name of the new airline was Northeast. By this time the airline only had an engineering facility at Southend and moved out, Northeast and BEA were to become the global British Airways. 1970-71: The Saunders ST27. Aviation Traders co-designed the Saunders ST27, Converted from the De Havilland Heron 2, a major re-working of the airframe saw the removal of the four Gipsy Queen engines and replaced by two Pratt & Whitney PT 6A-27 turbo-prop's, wing strengthening fuselage extended by 8ft 6in. These conversions saw the speed of the aircraft increase to 230mph with an increased passenger load of 23. In total thirteen aircraft were converted all but the prototype were converted by Saunders of Canada with technical assistance being sent by Aviation Traders, the project failed after the Saunders company failed commercially. 1971: The first visit to the airport by a Boeing 707 (N11RV). 1971: Seawing Flying Club opens. June 1971: Bristol Britannia G-AOVA Scrapped. Thursday 8th October 1971: Blackburn Beverly XB261. The Blackburn Beverley flew into the airport after it was donated to the museum. This aircraft had last been with the A&AEE at Boscombe Down it was used for para-drop trials with the clam doors removed this was the only Beverley to fly across the Atlantic this was on a flight to Canada for cold weather trials this flight is commemorated by the Maple Leaf flag on the aircraft's nose, the first flight of the aircraft took place on the 5th July 1955 and its last flight was from it's base at Boscombe Down in to Southend. Wednesday 27th October 1971: British Air Ferries sold to T D Keegan owner of Transmeridian Air Cargo. 1972: A number of new airlines started to operate out of Southend, one of these being Braathins & Martinair. A CL 44 Guppy flew on a direct route from New York J.F.K. Airport to Southend. It was operated by Transmeridian Air Cargo. The airport was use by many aircraft as a stop off point to clear customs, this resulted in many rare & vintage aircraft flying in to the airport. 1972: Vintage Aircraft Group flew-in with Miles Monarch G-AFLW, Aeronca G-AEXD, a Pussmoth, two Hornet Moth's, a Luton Minor, a Miles Messenger and a Tipsy Belfair. 1972: A Spitfire returns. Away from the airport there was an unexpected arrival in Prittlewell in the shape of Supermarine Spitfire Mk9 G-CDAN ex RF863/FB Y The owner originally intended to restore the aircraft to ground running condition in his garage and then taxi it round the airport at special events and open-days. Upon the opening of the museum the aircraft was taken there to display whilst its restoration was carried out, upon the closure of the museum the aircraft was moved to Duxford where it was put back in to the air, the aircraft moved to more warmer sky's down in New Zealand as part of the Tim Wallis Alpine Fighter Collection. With the closure of the collection the aircraft was sold to an Australian collector. Tuesday 1st February 1972: Channel Airways call in the receivers. Tuesday 15th February 1972: Channel Airways cease jet operations. Tuesday 29th February 1972: Channel Airways cease all operations, the last passenger flight arrived at Southend in the shape of De Havilland Heron G-APKW carrying just six passengers. Tuesday 28th March 1972: Canadair CL44 G-AZIN transferred from Transmeridian Air Cargo to British Air Ferries as a 170 seat passenger aircraft on the Southend-Ostend route, a second aircraft was to join it but operating problems with the aircraft saw it returned to Transmeridian for cargo work. June 1972: De Haviland Comet 4b (c/n06447) G-ARDI (SX-DAO) Dan Air scrapped. May 1972: Saab J29f Barrel 29640 flew in just for preservation at the museum. Friday 26th May 1972: The opening of the Southend Historic Aircraft Museum. The original museum plans was for just that an aircraft museum but theses plans were on a much grander scale for now the museum had been joined by a conference centre, car park, petrol station and a hotel. The museum was opened by Air Marshal Sir Harry Burton KCB, CBE, DSO, RAF who at the time was Air Officer Commander-In-Chief Air Support Command. June 1972: Vickers Viscount 812 (c/n359) G-AVHK (N246V) Channel Airways scrapped. June 1972: Vickers Viscount 812 (c/n361) G-AVNJ (N249V) Channel Airways scrapped. June 1972: Vickers Viscount 812 (c/n362) G-APPC (N250V) Channel Airways scrapped. June 1972: Vickers Viscount 812 (c/n363) G-AVHE (N251V)) Channel Airways scrapped. June 1972: Vickers Viscount 812 (c/n366) G-ATVE (N254V) Channel Airways scrapped. July 1972: De Havilland Heron G-AMUK/VH-AHB Scrapped. July 1972: De Havilland Heron G-ANCI/G-5-13/4X-ARL/OO-BIA Scrapped. July 1972: De Havilland Heron G-APKV/CX-AOU Scrapped. September 1972: Vickers Viscount 814 (c/n338) G-BAPF (SE-FOY, D-ANVN) BAF scrapped. 1973: The Rochford Hundred Flying Group acquire Beagle A61 Terrier 2 G-ASAK. 1973: Delta Air became regular visitors to the airport flying orange coloured Douglas DC6’s & Convair 440’s. Thursday 17th May 1973: Royal Air Force Red Arrows based at Southend. The RAF Red Arrows land at Southend with nine Folland Gnats, (XP514, XP531, XR540, XR991, XR955, XR987, XS101, XS107, XS111 they are based at the airport for the duration of that years Biggin Hill Airshow. Monday 21st May 1973: Red Arrows depart. July 1973: Vickers Vanguard 951 G-APEF Scrapped This was the aircraft that operated the world’s first commercial Vanguard service. Saturday 24th November 1973: Hawker Sea Fury CF-CHB flew into the airport. The aircraft had become the first Canadian registered aircraft to take part in the “unlimited” class air races at Reno in Nevada USA, owned and operated by Ormond Haydon-Baillie. Thursday 6th December 1973: Lockheed T33 CF-EHB flew into the airport. The aircraft was part of the Ormond Haydon-Baillie Collection the aircraft retained its all over silver scheme from its time with the Royal Canadian Air Force days. Currently G-WGHB at Wycombe Air Park. 1974: Aviation Traders leave Southend. 1974: Helicopter Hire move in from Elstree. September 1974: De Havilland Dove G-5-1 G-ALBM Scrapped. Friday 4th October 1974: Douglas DC6b OO-VGB crash. During take off the gear was accidentally retracted by the Flight engineer the nose leg retracted as the nose was up but the weight of the aircraft was still on its main gear the aircraft failed to get off the ground and came to rest nose down 30 ft from the end of runway 24, damage to the aircraft, both left tyres deflated, with the inboard having a 15in gash across the crown of the tread, there was damage to the air-craft’s nose, wing, fin, rudder which had been penetrated by flying debris, there was a large gash in the right wing outboard No4 which was leaking fuel, all four engines were shock loaded and the propellers all sustained damage No4 had lost one whole blade, all has sheared from their engines. Thursday 14th November 1974: Two Belgian Air Force Lockheed C130 Hercules aircraft land transporting the Republic F86f Thunderstreak for the museum. 1975: BAF buy the Handley Page HPR7 Herald quickly becoming the Worlds largest operator of the type with 14 aircraft. 1975: Vickers Vanguard 952 CF-TKI in use by ATEL as a structural test aircraft was scrapped. 1975: Avro Anson C16 G-AVHU (TX211) frame only, scrapped. March 1975: Douglas DC6b OO-VGB scrapped. This aircraft had crashed on 4th October 1974, it had been towed and parked behind the BAF hangers until sold to Frankfurt Aviation Services for spares reclamation. Saturday 14th June 1975: Stample V82 flew into the airport to recreate the 1941 escape of General Baron Mike Donnet and Commandant Leon Divoy. 1976: The Russian airline Aeroflot demonstrated the Yakovlev Yak 40 Feedliner to BAF and in a unique deal a Russian Kamov Ka26 Helicopter took up residence with Helicopter Hire, 1976: Last flights of the Car Ferrying Carvair's in the United Kingdom. The popularity of the cheaper car ferry’s from Dover and the boom in the package tour holiday saw the need of such a service as flying your own car on holiday decline rapidly. 1976: De Havilland Dove 5 (c/n04462) G-AZPG scrapped. Wednesday 24th November 1976: De Havilland Dove G-AZPG (HB-LAS) Withdrawn from use. 1977: Prototype Carvair nose section scrapped. 1977: The West German Air Force. The West German Air Force were regular visitors to the airport it their C-160 Transall freighters, the flights were to pick-up Super HY-LO loading equipment built at the airport by Avialift. 1977: Heavy Lift & the Shorts Belfast. By this time Aviation Traders had moved to Stansted, moving in to the vacated hangers was Heavy Lift, the company took delivery of it's first Shorts Belfast soon after and registered it as G-ASKE, the aircraft had just left R.A.F service where it had been XR362. The aircraft only came on to the civil market after the Labour government's massive defence cuts forced the cancellation of the project, (the Belfast first flew on 5th January 1964 and only 10 were built). Sunday 11th September 1977: Proposed museum flying day. 1978: Douglas DC4 G-BBVN (HS-VGZ) Eagle Air Cargo scrapped after airline failed. 1979: TAC/Heavy Lift take over the ex ATEL hangers and begin civilianising the ex RAF Shorts SC5 Belfast Freighter. 1979: The Carvair is retired from service G-AOFW "Big John" is retired out side the BAF Engineering hanger. 1979: British Air Ferries leave the scheduled passenger serves market to concentrate on the charter sector, British Island Airways take over the operating licences of the schedules routes and taken over by AirUK. March 1979: Vickers Viscount G-AMON (c/n27) owned by Cecil Jones Comprehensive High School scrapped.
1980-2000 Struggling On Monday 14th September 1980: Out-of-Sequence Air Rally held at the airport attracts two dozen aircraft. 1981: British Air Ferries bought the entire fleet of British Airways Viscounts becoming the world's largest operator of the type and forever forging a link between Southend & the Viscount. 1982: Harvest Air won the contract to tackle oil spills around the UK coastline. Harvest Air had basses at Southend, Kinloss, Exeter and Prestwick it had a fleet of specially converted aircraft on 30 minute stand-by 24 hours a day 365 days a year. The fleet included a DC3 Dakota and six Britain Norman Islanders, a demonstration was held off Shoebury for Ministers and officials using the DC3 and one of the Islanders the aircraft were flying as low as 30 feet whilst spraying water out over a specified area of the sea. In March they perform a display of oil dispersing off Southend with a Douglas DC3 Dakota flying 30ft above the waves. 1982: Nigel Brendish took off from Southend and headed off towards France, by the time he reached the French cost 10minites and 40 seconds (Dover to French coast) later he was in the record books, he broke the world record for flying from England to France INVERTED. 1982: Cosmos Holidays begin a regular service to Palma and Gerona with a Monarch Airlines Boeing 737. January 1982: Sioux AH1's XT499 and XT563 scrapped. Saturday 27th March 1982: Southend Historic Aircraft Museum closes. Saturday 30th October 1982: Boeing Chinook of No18Sqn flies into the airport on route from the Falkland Islands. 1983: There were a number or interesting visitors to the airport the first was a Lear Jet Ambulance that flew in from Switzerland carrying a mother and her baby born 10 weeks prematurely. Another interesting visitor came in the shape of the rare DC2 PH-AJU. 1983: Air UK leave the airport to operate out of Stansted. 1983: Chance Vought Corsair NX1377A diverts into Southend because of bad weather at Biggin Hill after a display in France upon landing the engine seized. 1983: The Mystery Jet MJ1 leaves the airport. The Mystery Jet MJ1 was a biz jet conversion of the De Havilland DH115 Vampire, the cockpit section replaced by a stretched cabin allowing up to eight seats to be fitted, the MJ1 that was at Southend moved to Bushey Hertfordshire with its owner Sandy Topen it was reported to heave been burnt during a clearance of derelict aircraft on the airfield, however a report said it went to the USA. Tuesday 10th May 1983: Auction sells off museum aircraft. Sunday 5th & Monday 6th June 1983: The rare granting of a route licence to operate a service from Southend to Stansted on pleasure flights by a Douglas DC3 Dakota, the trip was to view the US Space Shuttle "Enterprise" piggy backed on its mother ship a Boeing 747. Thursday 4th August 1983: Robin DR400/140 G-BBCS Nose gear assembly struck VASI and collapsed after the aircraft swung to the right & left the paved surface during landing on runway 24. November 1983: The last Aviation Traders ATL 98 Carvair in the UK G-ADFU "BIG JOHN" is scrapped. December 1983: Bell47g G-WYTE fly's in operations form the airport. 1984: PAPI approach lighting was installed at the airport. 1984: Heavy Lift Engineering set up. 1984: After being absent from the airport for thirteen years the Boeing 707 returns for maintenance by Heavy Lift Engineering. 1984: The Boeing 727 start to operate out of the airport on the well established Burstin Flights to Faro. 1984: Four NAMYC YS11’s of Pyramid Airways fly in (N159P, N187P, N294P, N219P). January 1984: Aviation Traders ATL98 Carvair G-AOFW Scrapped. Thursday 1st March 1984: British Airports International tool over the running of the airport from the council but it was still owned by them BAI was jointly owed by British Airports Authority and International Aerdio Ltd. Thursday 31st May 1984: Bristol Britannia G-AOVF fly’s out of Southend after storage to go on display at the Cosford Air Museum. October 1984: Handley Page HP4 Hearld 401 (c/n171) G-BEYD (FM1020) B A F scrapped. November 1984: Maersk Air operate Dash 7’s to Billind. 1985: British Airports International take over the running of the airport from the council. 1985: Air Portugal offer flight to Lisbon in a Boeing 737. 1985: Hispania launch services to Palma, Alicante and Malaga using a Aerospatiale Caravelle. 1985: Maersk Air launches a twice daily service to Billund with a Dash 7. 1985: Holland Airlines launch services to Rotterdam with Government Aircraft Factories (GAF) Nomad. 1985: AirUK leave Southend for Stansted. 1985: Air Malta launch Boeing 737 flights to Malta. Thursday 10th January 1985: De Havilland Tridents 2E G-AVFF & G-AVFN retired by British Airways fly into the airport for spares reclamation and scrapping, they are processed the same month. Thursday 31st January 1985: De Havilland Trident 2E Trident G-AVFL arrives for scrapping after retirement by British Airways it is scrapped during February. February 1985: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n267) G-AOYS scrapped. Monday 4th February 1985: De Havilland Trident 2E G-AZXM arrives for scrapping after retirement by British Airways scrapped same month. Wednesday 13th February 1985: De Havilland Trident 2E G-AVFO arrives for scrapping after retirement by British Airways it is scrapped the same month. April 1986: Avro Anson G-AGPG leaves the ex-museum complex. Monday 26th May 1986: First Seafront Airshow. Wednesday 17th December 1986: Avro Vulcan XH558 performs a number of touch and go landings enabling the crew to prepare for the following days event. Thursday 18th December 1986: Avro Vulcan B.2 XL426 flew into the airport. The aircraft had flown in for conversion in to a civilian aircraft. Owned by Roy Jacobson the aircraft sat in the open for a number of years facing the terminal. It was then towed over to the far side of the airport and the Vulcan Memorial Flight Supporters Club was formed to help preserve the aircraft, the club restored the electrics and ran one of the aircraft's engines. They then took over the ownership of the aircraft and renamed the club the Vulcan Restoration Trust the next big step was when all four of the engines were run this was followed by the aircraft taxiing for the first time under its own power. 1987: Adverse weather sees such a heavy snow fall the airport suspends operations for three weeks. 1987: British Air Ferries re-enter the scheduled passenger market operating a twice daily round trip to Jersey and Guernsey on Saturdays and Wednesdays. February 1987: Handley Page Herald G-BEYE Scrapped. Friday 1st May 1987: Southend Jet Centre opens. Friday 22nd May 1987: Euroskyhop begin coach-fly services with a Viscount operating to Ostend. A coach picked up passengers in London and then drove to Southend where passengers would board the flight. Monday 25th May 1987: The second seafront airshow. June 1987: Sabena launch Southend-Brussels service with a beech King-Air 200. Friday 17th July 1987: Douglas A26C Invader N4806E 44-34172 arrives by road. The twin engine American bomber arrived at Southend for restoration to flying condition by Tired Iron Limited, the project later moved out and has since gone into storage. Tuesday 21st July 1987: Douglas A26K Invader 64-17657 nose section arrives to act as spares for N4806E. Friday 16th October 1987: The morning of the Great Storm, aircraft were turned over and a hanger collapsed on to those inside but the airport stays operational. Monday 11th January 1988: Vickers Viscount G-APIM "Stephen Piercey" struck by taxing Shorts 330 G-BHWT. Tuesday 1st March 1988: Regionair launch twice daily weekday service to Rotterdam with a 16 seated Bandeirantee. Sunday 15th May 1988: 1st Burstin Travel chartered BAE146 to Palma flight departs. Monday 30th May 1988: Third seafront airshow. Saturday 25th June 1988: Cmelak Z37 G-AVZB flew out of the airport for the last time going to Old Warden. Monday 15th August 1988: The Fuji WDL-1 airship arrives for a four-day visit. Sunday 21st August 1988: The UK's first scheduled flight by the Fokker F50 arrives at Southend, this was a Maersk Air flight from Billund. 1989: BAF & Baltic Airlines merge to stave of bankruptcy. Monday 27th February 1989: Euroskyhop cease trading. Monday 29th May 1989: Forth seafront airshow. June 1989: The Americans return. The UK's only flying Boeing B17 G-BIDF (Sally B) arrived at Southend with two other B17's from France F-AZDX “Pink Lady” (Mother & Country) & F-BEEA “château de Verneuil” (Baby Ruth) for a re-paint to take part in the re-make of Memphis Belle. The French machine F-BEEA was destroyed in a take off accident at RAF Binbrook during filming on 25th July 1989, all the crew safely escaped the crash. 1990: The airport gained its Instrument Landing System (ILS allows pilots to land the plane using two instruments in his cockpit). 1990: Refurbishair opened for business they set up shop in the former Avialift hanger, they can take-in up to four BAC111's at any time or 757, 727 or a 707 with a 737. 1990: Regionair launch Southend-Paris, Southend-Jersey and Southend-Guernsey services with the Banderirante. Sunday 11th February 1990: Vickers Viscount G-APIM leaves the airport by road to the Brooklands Museum. Sunday 27th & Monday 28th May 1990: Aircraft visiting for the fifth seafront airshow included: (26.5) Tucrnos ZF140 ZF162, Hercules XV303; (27.5) Sea Harriers ZA175 XZ492, Hunter GA11 XF300, Sea King XV671; (28.5)Pilatus PC7's Patrouille Martini HB-HMA HB-HMB HB-HMC, Stearmen N54992 N707TJ, TNT BAE146 QT G-TNTD. Thursday 31st May 1990: 75th Anniversary of the first flight from the airport. 1991: A Spitfire, Devon and Stample visited the airport on their way to the Biggin Hill Air Fair. 1991: Regionair cease trading. 1991: Pickett Hamilton Fort discovered by fire crews. Once the water had been pumped out it was found to still be in working order after 50 years…! The fort was removed from the ground in January 2010 and has moved to a museum in Warwickshire. 1991: Douglas A26 Invader N4806E 44-34172 departs the airport…by road. March 1991: Vickers Viscount 802 (c/n168) G-AOHT (ZK-SKY) B-W-A (Parcel Force) scrapped. Sunday 26th and Monday 27th May 1991: Sixth seafront airshow. October 1991: Former Libyan Air Force Aero L39 Albatross flies into the airport, it is later registered N162JC and departs for the US. Thursday 10th October 1991: Handley Page HPR4 Hearld 401 (c/n172) G-BEYE (FM1021) General Aviation Spares scrapped. 1992: De Havilland Dragon Rapide pleasure flights. 1992: Hawker Siddley HS748 G-ATEK Air Senegal (6V-AFX, CS-TAV, RP-C1041, U2-LIV, VP-LIV) Scrapped Monday 11th May 1992: Yugotours flights begin to Yugoslavia however the flights cease after three weeks due to civil unrest in the Balkans. Sunday 24th & Monday 25th May 1992: Seventh seafront airshow. Thursday 9th July 1992: First Round the World Air Rally uses Southend as its only UK stop-over. Sixteen aircraft took part in the race Southend was the third stop, they remained at the airport for two days before departing to Moscow. Saturday 29th August 1992: Handley Page Herald G-APWA a resident of the airport since early 1982 was dissimulated and left by road for a new home at the Museum of Berkshire Aviation at Woodley. The aircraft is thought to be the oldest surviving of its type. Sunday 11th October 1992: Full scale crash scenario staged including airport services, seven Essex fire brigade engines, rescue tender, seven ambulances and paramedics. Thursday 5th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BDAS c/n 202 arrived from Gatwick re-registered G-OBWB. Albarka Air 1-11 5N- BBP lasted noted Malta 12th September 2002. Friday 6th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BDAT c/n 232 arrived from Gatwick re-registered G-OBWA. 9L-LDL last noted Malta 2003. Wednesday 25th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BJYM c/n 242 arrived from Hurn re-registered G-OBWE. Friday 14th June. It left with new registration 9L-LDJ. Its final destination Sierra Leone with new operator Air Leone. Thursday 26th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BCXR c/n 242 arrived from Hurn scrapped 30th March 1993. Thursday 26th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BJMV c/n 244 arrived from Hurn scrapped 28th August 1998. Friday 27th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BDAE c/n 203 arrived from Hurn re-registered G-OBWD. Friday 27th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BJYL c/n 208 arrived from Hurn re-registered 5N-ENO of Oriental Airlines for storage. Saturday 28th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BCWA c/n 205 arrived from Hurn scrapped June 1995. Saturday 28th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-BEKA c/n 230 arrived from Hurn re-registered G-OBWC. Albarka Air 1-11 5N- BBQ lasted noted Malta 6th September 2002. Sunday 29th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-AWWX c/n 184 arrived from Hurn scrapped 30th September 1998. Sunday 29th November 1992: Dan Air BAC1-11 G-AXYD c/n 210 arrived from Hurn scrapped 29th August 1998. The influx of BAC1-11's came after the demise of long serving IT charter airline Dan Air (London), the airline had been suffering financial difficulties for a number of years but during 1992 the airline faced a total financial collapse, British Airways stepped in and bought the ailing airline for just £1. BA had retired their fleet of BAC1-11 a few years earlier and was not interested in operating the type again, so British Air Ferries stepped in and bought the fleet. February 1993: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n257) G-LOND (G-AOYI, G-AOYM) BAF scrapped. February 1993: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n261) G-AOYL BAF scrapped. Tuesday 6th April 1993: British Air Ferries changes name to British World Airlines. Tuesday 13th April 1993: Senair begins operating an Air Taxi service to Europe using a Piper Senica. May 1993: Vickers Viscount 814 (c/n370) G-AYOX (4X-AVA, D-ANAC) B-W-A scrapped. Sunday 30th & Monday 31st May 1993: Eighth seafront airshow. Tuesday 20th July 1993: Malta Plus offers once a week service (Monday) to Malta by a 737. Friday 2nd October 1993: First visit to the airport by an Airbus A320 (E-ITLE of Translift Airlines for re-spray). January 1994: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n256) G-AOYG BAF scrapped. February 1994: Shorts Belfast XR362/G-BEPE/G-52-14 which last flew on 26/10/84 and Certificate of Airworthiness expired on 11/3/85 was scrapped. February 1994: Shorts Belfast XR363/G-OHCA "Goliath" still in her original RAF Transport Command colour scheme was scrapped. Saturday 4th & Sunday 5th June 1994: Ninth seafront airshow. 1995: The Rochford Hundred Flying Group end their 22 year relationship with terrier G-ASAK, it is sold and replaced with Piper PA22-180 Colt G-ARKK. 1995: BAC 111 G-OCNW Scrapped. Saturday 21st January 1995: Canadair 601 Challenger N61AF piloted by ex-local man made the types first visit to the airport. Friday 21st April 1995: ex-RAF Andover's XS789 and XS794 flew in to the airport for conversion to civilian configuration they later became D2-MG + D2-MAF. Tuesday 9th May 1995: DC9 G-PKBM, arrives. Friday 26th May 1995: Refurbished passenger terminal opens. Sunday 26th & Monday 27th May 1995: The 10th anniversary of the Southend Airshow aircraft operating out of the airport for the event included: RAF Jaguar XX116, RAF Tornado's ZA327+ZA560, RAF Harrier's ZD329+ZD409, Aloutte 3's A-324, A-350, A-453, A-390 and A-465 all part of the R Neth AF Grasshoppers, F-27 C-8 R Neth AF, Avro 504 G-ECKE (replica), Corsair G-FGID & SU-31 RA-01004. Monday 19th June 1995: Three De Havilland Vampire's G-DHWW/G-DHVV & G-DHZZ flew in. Wednesday 28th June 1995: With retirement from service by the Swiss Air Force Hawker Hunters J-4058 J-4103 flew-in for onward sale. Wednesday 12th July 1995: More ex-Swiss Air Force Hawker Hunters fly in J-4035, J-4060, J-4090 and J-4097. September 1995: Conair Firecat F-WECK flew into the airport on route from its base in France to the Conair factory in British Columbia Canada to be converted in to a turboprop. 1996: The airport had new operators, in the shape of The London Southend Airport Company they took over the site from the council on a 150-year lease. The old terminal building was demolished and a new one built in its place any old disused buildings were also demolished. Friday 3rd May 1996: Aircraft taking part in the AOPA Rally arrive scheduled to fly in are: Grob G-BLUV, J3 Cub G-BSFD, SA120 G- BPCL, De Haviland Chipmunk DHC1 G-AOZP, BE36 N39AD, Cessna C210T LN-TFJ, A G-BODO, Cessna C172 G-AWMP, BE76 G- DUCH, North American T6 Harvard G-BGOR, Vickers Vimy N-VY, Cessna C172 G-BOYP. Sunday 26th and Monday 27th May 1996: Eleventh seafront airshow. June 1996: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n266) G-AOYR B-W-A scrapped. August 1996: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n259) G-BOLA (G-AOYJ) B-W-A scrapped. 1997: Arrived and with it a whole new vision of the future for air-travel in Southend, early in the year the Shers retail centre opened and proposals were put forward to build new terminal with a connecting rail station and visitors centre. The plan were put to both Southend Borough council and Rochford District Council, Southend backed the plan whilst Rochford delayed there decision eventually they passed it. The proposals were then sent to the Secretary-Of-State who had the final say as part of the project would encroach on to the green belt but in early 1998 he passed the proposals. The proposals are in jeopardy from London City Airport's (LCA) proposals to double the number of flights it handles. The management at Southend are requesting that the CAA give both airports the aerospace they need to expand. Instead of giving a larger slice to LCA which in the past has taken over some of Southend's aerospace. March 1997: Vickers Viscount 806 (c/n263) G-OPAS (G-AOYN) B-W-A ex-Parcel Force scrapped. October 1998: Vickers Viscount 807 G-CSZB B W A scrapped. The cockpit section was saved and after spending time out side a pub in Leicestershire it moved to a storage yard it was bought in 2003 by the East Midlands Aeropark. 1999: Aero L-29 Delfin G-DLFN flew in to be operated out of the airport and a Jet Provost moved in for a short time. 1999: Handley Paige Herald 187 G-BEYK Scrapped. February-March 1999: Lockheed Tristar EI-COL Scrapped. Friday 12th March 1999: Sikorsky S76c G-XXEA of the Royal Flight lands with Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness Prince Philip the Duke of Edinburgh for a visit to Southend and Basildon. Monday 12th April 1999: Ilyushin IL 76 7T-WIV of the Algerian Air Force flew in for avionic work this was the types first visit. Friday 14th May 1999: Shorts 330-100 G-IOCS destroyed by fire. Sunday 30th and Monday 31st May 1999: Fourteenth seafront airshow. During the display the BBMF's Lancaster's number 3 engine blew up, the pilot made an emergency landing back at the Airport, the Lancaster was to spend another 3 weeks sitting at the airport waiting for a replacement engine. Wednesday 14th July 1999: Ilyushin IL 76 7T-WIV of the Algerian Air Force performs test flights calibrating its new ILS systems. August 1999: The Lancaster was to return to the airport during the Clacton Airshow, also flying in for the display were 2 Tornado's, 2 Harrier's, a Spitfire, Canberra and a Sea King. Thursday 30th September 1999: Boeing 707-138B HZ-123 of the Saudi Arabian Air Force landed to be placed into storage. December 1999: BAC1-11-509 G-AXYD BWA scrapped.
2000 - 2011 A New Dawn Sunday 28th and Monday 29th May 2000: Fifteenth seafront airshow. 2001: Through out the year Shorts Belfast XR367/G-BFYU/G-52-15 saw a slow lingering death as it was slowly scrapped, her last flight had taken place on 26/2/92 with the certificate of airworthiness running out on 10/4/93. 2001: Second Ilyushin IL 76 of the Algerian Air Force flew in. Sunday 27th & Monday 28th May 2001: Sixteenth seafront airshow. Tuesday 11th September 2001: After the terror attacks in New York and the resulting closure of London’s aerospace Southend takes 100 flights over the next five days. Thursday 18th October 2001: Drugs Bust. Boeing 707 9L-LDU arrived at the airport in the early hours of the morning, upon landing the pilot reported technical problems and taxied to the end of runway 24, where a number of large suitcases were dropped from the aircraft, these were quickly collected by the police and customs officers that were laying in wait after a tip off, inside the cases was a consignment of Cocaine with an estimated street value of £100million the pilot and passengers were arrested. Sunday 4th November 2001: Namyc YS11 9U-BHP of Tygun and Fournier RF4 destroyed by fire caused by a firework. Friday 14th December 2001: British World Airlines cease all operation. 2002: The Rochford Hundred Flying Group disbanded. Thursday 18th April 2002: Gulfstream AA5 G-PAWS accident. The aircraft was parked on a grass area near the flying school at Southend airport. The engine would not start using the aircraft battery and it was decided to attempt to 'hand swing' the propeller and then taxi the aircraft to the maintenance area. A flying instructor was the pilot in command and, in accordance with the school's procedures, another instructor was allocated the task of swinging the propeller. The engine controls, parking brake and magnetos were correctly set and the propeller swung in an attempt to start the engine. The engine did not start therefore a second attempt was made. As soon as the propeller moved the engine started. The first down going blade of the propeller struck the head of the instructor and the second blade struck his arm. The aircraft commander immediately closed the throttle and selected the magnetos to OFF. He then vacated the aircraft and assisted the instructor, who had suffered a cut head and a badly fractured left arm, until an ambulance arrived. The flying school's procedure for hand swinging a propeller previously required this to be completed by a flying instructor. Since this incident the practice of hand swinging a propeller has been prohibited. Sunday 2nd & Monday 3rd June 2002: Seventeenth seafront airshow. Saturday June 2002: Avro Lancaster PA474 cracks undercarriage leg upon lading after a 100ft beat up of the airport with Spitfire and Hurricane. Wednesday 25th September 2002: Dutch owned Lockheed L-749A Constellation makes low pass on its way to Lelystad after a stop over at Duxford. 2003: Heavy Lift go in to receivership, an attempt to sell the company as a going concern fail and the name Heavy Lift disappears, ATC Lasham buy up the hanger and set up shop at Southend many of the Heavy Lift employees are re-hired, the Belfast's freighters G-BEPS stored at Southend as a spares source for G-HLFT are sold, FT is flown to Prestwick then on to Australia where it remains flying. February 2003: The airport operators announce plans to install a new ILS, RESA (Runway End Safety Area), and the moving of the St Laurence church, included in the plan is a trust fund to pay for the up-keep of the church, the restoration of the church, a new car park, extended graveyard and a new church hall. After the story of the airports plan breaks an action group was formed to fight the plans, the Church and Airport Action Group. Throughout the year the anti-airport lobby made out & out lies about the true intentions of the airport claiming that the church was going to be demolished, the graveyard closed to the graveyard being demolished torn up and concreted over! Sunday 25th & Monday 26th May 2003: Eighteenth seafront airshow September 2003: Southend Council throw-out the airports planning application, the airport launch an appeal to the Sectary of State. Tuesday 23rd September 2003: Cessna 172N G-BGBR Flipped over in high winds. Saturday 11th October 2003: Boeing 707-373C 9L-LDU departed to Malta on its first flight since being impounded on Thursday 18th October 2001, the aircraft was badly damaged by fire on Friday 23rd December 2005 at Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen Airport. November 2003: Airport submit new plans to Southend Council, this time to remove the earth bank at the end of runway 24, remove the fence and replace it with a fragment-able one, raise Eastwoodbury Lane so that it is in line with the runway, replace the runway lights, replace the ILS and use a field at the end of the runway for its new RESA and to install railway crossing style gate at the wigwag lights to stop people passing them at danger. November 2003: Airport receive a Southend Council Committee approval to the new works, however a Councillor puts a block on the proposals and demands that the plans go before full council for approval. More protests begin with the Anti-airport lobby claiming the airport are secretly going to move the church as part of the proposal, the airport state the church is categorically not part of the application. The protesters continue their attack on the airport, with claims that the gates will cause traffic backlogs, drastically affect the church services, would delay weddings and funerals, protesters also claim that the gates would be kept closed by the airport! In effect permanently closing the road. The airport say that the gates would only ever be used when a large airliners was taking off or landing and dot-matrix signs on the approach roads would warn drivers that the gates were closing or about to close and direct them on to alternate routes. December 2003: The airport wins its planning application. Wednesday 23rd May 2004: Consolidated PY5A Catalina C-FNJF “Rasta Cat” arrives at the airport for the airshow the following week. Saturday 29th May 2004: USAF MH53 70-1630 flies in for airshow making the types first visit. Saturday 29th May 2004: Westland Lynx HAS.Mk.3 of the Black Cats makes an emergency landing during its practice for the airshow with a rotor head problem. Sunday 30th & Monday 31st May 2004: Nineteenth Seafront Airshow. Sunday 30th May 2004: Hawker Hunter G-PSST struck jet pipe on landing. The accident flight had originated at Kemble Airfield and the pilot had carried out a flying display in the Southend area before landing on Runway 24 at Southend Airport. The aircraft was fitted with 150 gallon drop tanks on the inboard under-wing stations and had approximately 1700 to 2200 lbs of fuel on board, giving an approach speed of 135 kt which was maintained throughout the final approach. In a Hunter aircraft the approach angle during the latter stages of a visual approach is usually less than but in this instance the pilot elected to fly a steeper approach (approximately 3.5°) due to obstructions below the approach path to the runway. The weather conditions were fine, with a surface wind from approximately 240° at 8 to 12 kt. After touchdown the braking parachute was streamed as usual, but the pilot thought that the tail may have contacted the runway at the same time as the main undercarriage. An external inspection confirmed this, revealing damage to the tail-cone and jet-pipe, which had been punctured when the tail-skid detached from the tail-cone. The pilot stated that he had landed with the tailplane interconnect switched 'ON' which made the aircraft more sensitive in pitch during the flare manoeuvre. This was the normal position of the switch during an air display and whilst manoeuvring at high speeds. Although he had landed in this configuration before and without difficulty, he had intended to place the tailplane interconnect switch 'OFF' and, temporarily forgetting the status of the system, had not made due allowance in his landing technique. The pilot also stated that he had deliberately aimed for a smooth touchdown in order to reduce wear on the tyres. The Aircrew Manual for the type states: 'holding off may result in an excessive nose-up attitude (particularly in the case of a flap-less landing or when carrying outboard stores) with the likelihood of scraping a tail-cone and/or dropping a wing'. Sunday 30th May 2004: Supermarine Spitfire during its display the aircraft began to trail smoke behind it the aircraft made an emergency landing back at the airport investigation found that the oil had all been lost from the aircraft and its engine seized. Monday 7th June 2004: An26 SP-FDS arrives for weather division it departs later the same day to Valencia. Friday 19th October 2004: BAC111-492GM arrives for internal re-fit. Monday 27th December 2004: Resident Yak52 G-YAMS makes emergency landing at Canewdon after engine failure, the pilot was safe, the aircraft however, was written off. Sunday 20th February 2005: HS748 VH-AMQ arrives after retiring from service with the Royal Australian Air Force. Monday 14th March 2005: HS748 VH-AYS arrives after retiring from service with the Royal Australian Air Force. Wednesday 23rd March 2005: BAC111-492GM departs. Saturday 7th May 2005: 1st scheduled flight of the year, Flybe Dash 8 G-JEDU from Jersey. Saturday 28th May 2005: The first visit of the type by Eurofighter Typhoon, two of the RAF latest fighter aircraft landed in preparation for the weekend airshow a number of go-a-rounds were made before landing. Sunday 29th May 2005: First visit of Type by the Merlin helicopter, first visit by six L39’s of the Breiting jet Formation team. Sunday 29th and Monday 30th May 2005: Twentieth Seafront Airshow. June 2005: Old UPS sheds demolished. Saturday 18th June 2005: Microlight Rally. Sunday 3rd July 2005: RAF SAR Sea King ZH544 makes emergency landing after hydraulic fault ZH540 flew in later the same day with the spares to fix the aircraft. Saturday 16th July 2005: 3D-AJG of Arrow Air landed for re-painting. Thursday 25th August 2005: AN72 ES-NOI of Atlantic Airlines visits. Thursday 25th August 2005: Sea King RS-04 of the Belgian AF performs pilot training. Saturday 29th October 2005: BAC1-11 YR-MIA of MIA Airlines arrives. Saturday 1st October 2005: MH53 69-5784 of the USAF visits. Sunday 27th November 2005: An26 LY-APN of Aviavila visits. 2006: Southend Airport breaks all records with an increase in passenger figures of 491%. The vast increase was mainly thanks to Ford Air (the Ford Motor Company’s own airline) relocating from Stansted Airport to Southend. Sunday 28th and Monday 29th May 2006: Twenty-first Seafront Airshow. Wednesday 12th July 2006: Fokker F-27 3Q-QSC Scrapped. Wednesday 12th July 2006: BAC1-11 G-OBHF/G-OBWD (British Heart Foundation) Scrapped. Wednesday 12th July 2006: Shorts SD360 - CS-TMY Scrapped. Wednesday 28th June 2006: The Qantas Founders Outback Museum buy Boeing 707-138B HZ-123 and it is re-registered VH-XBA. The aircraft was the first passenger jet airliner to serve with Qantas and the first jet transport registered in Australia it had to adopt a new registration as its original VH-EBA had been re-issued to a Jetstar Airbus A330-200. Saturday 2nd December 2006: Boeing 707-138B VH-XBA makes its first post restoration test flight becoming the worlds oldest flying privately operated Boeing 707 in the world. Wednesday 6th December 2006: Boeing 707-138B VH-XBA makes second test flight. Friday 8th December 2006: Boeing 707-138B VH-XBA departs Southend on route to Australia. The aircraft called at Dublin, Tenerife, Bermuda, Orlando, Los Angeles, Honolulu, Nadi, Sydney. The aircraft flew into to The Qantas Founders Outback Museum at Longreach on Sunday 10th June 2007. Sunday 27th and Monday 28th May 2007: Twenty-second Seafront Airshow. January 2008: Airport lease put up for sale by Regional Airports Ltd. Sunday 25th and Monday 26th May 2008: Twenty-third Southend Airshow. Friday 30th and Saturday 31st May 2008: Last passenger carrying flights by Douglas DC3 Dakotas from Southend. Sunday 8th June 2008: Boeing E3 Sentry circles Southend waiting for its slot at the Biggin Hill airshow before it departs it makes a low level pass of the airport. Saturday 30th August 2008: Airport Open Day. Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th September 2008: De Havilland Dragon Rapide flights from Southend. October 2008: Shorts SC5 Belfast G-BEPS Scrapped. Tuesday 2nd December 2008: Airport lease sold to the Stobart Group. Sunday 24th and Monday 25th May 2009: 24th Southend Airshow (re-branded Southend Festival of the Air). Tuesday 13th October 2009: The Stobart Group submit a planning application to extend the runway by 984ft (300meters). In addition to the extending of the runway, six cottages to be demolished, a section of church wall at St Laurence and All Saints Church to be dismantled and replaced by a fence the section of dismantled wall would be re-used at another section of the church boundary, new Instrument Landing System, and the re-direction of Eastwoodbury Lane. January 2010: Construction starts on the airport railway station. Tuesday 18th January 2010: John Denham the Sectary of State for Communities and Local Government calls in the expansion proposals under a section 106 Agreement. A section 106 Agreement means that the elected local council back a proposal and approve it, Sectary of State for Communities and Local Government has the final say he can either back the council’s approval or dismiss it and call a full public enquiry. Wednesday 20th January 2010: Southend Borough Council vote 7—3 to back the proposed airport expansion. The vote saw the Conservative members of the planning committee back the airport along with the Labour members, however the Liberal Democrats voted against the application. March 2010: Construction begins on replacement control tower. Thursday 4th March 2010: North American Rockwell OV10 Bronco G-BZGK makes types first visit to the airport. Friday 19th March 2010: John Denham, The Sectary of State for Communities and Local Government announces that he will not call the airport expansion plans in for a full public enquiry and that he approves the planning permission awarded by Southend Borough Council. Tuesday 23rd March 2010: Fokker EIII replica G-FOKR visits airport. Sunday 30th and Monday 31st May 2010: 25th Southend Airshow. Sunday 15th August 2010: RAF Red Arrows make Flypast of the airport for the Vulcan Restoration Trust open day, they are followed a short time later by the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight's Lancaster. Tuesday 31st August 2010: Steve Noujaim takes off on a record attempt to fly from London-Cape Town-London for a single engine aircraft. Friday 3rd September 2010: Steve Noujaim arrives back at Southend breaking the record for a single engine airplane London-Cape Town-London, he is greeted by a dozen Rans aircraft and two Spitfires. Saturday 25th September 2010: Southend wins the ERA (European Regions Airline Association) Airport Achievement Award 2010 recognises the airport's work to secure planning permission for an extension to the runway which will increase passenger numbers to 2million. Thursday 9th September 2010: Airport hotel gains planning permission. Wednesday 27th October 2010: Construction starts on new terminal building Friday 12th November 2010: Aer Arann announce plans to start operating out of Southend with flights starting on 28th March 2011, with flights operating to Waterford and Galway in the Irish Republic. Thursday 4th November 2010: Link Road given green light. A major part of the runway extension is the diversion of Eastwoodbury Lane to form a new link road to join up with Nestuda Way. Thursday red February 2010: High Court judge dismisses protesters request for a judicial review in to Southend Borough Councils handling of the planning process into the extension of the runway, the protester launch an appeal against the ruling. Wednesday 9th February 2011: Boeing 757 G-STRX of Astraeus re-painted at Southend as "Ed Force One" for the Iron Maiden tour. Friday 4th March 2011: Re-surfacing of runway starts, the airport is closed to all traffic from 8:00pm Friday 4th March - 8:00am Monday 7th March for the first stage to be completed, the same closures happen for the following two weeks to get the work finished. Sunday 27th March 2011: First international passenger flights for a decade commence with Aer Arann flying to Waterford & Galway, the first flight arriving was from Waterford in the shape of ATR42 EI-EHH landing at 10:00am. 16ht June 2011: Easyjet announce that they are moving in to Southend with 70 flights a week.

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