Jane’s Aviation


Operated from Dec 1987 to Sep 1993

Main Base – Blackpool then Liverpool and Coventry

Founders/Directors – Andy and Hilary James

Starting out in December 1987, Benfleet couple Andy and Hilary James began operations from Southend with a single leased Islander. However, the aircraft itself would not fly services from the airport and was mostly confined to the route between Blackpool and Belfast on Lynx contracts. As operations expanded more aircraft were leased, the fleet gaining two C-47s from the now defunct Harvestair, while a SD-330 was later added too, although none of these early aircraft or their replacements were ever seen in a ‘Jane’s Aviation’ livery, the company preferring instead to retain the owners colours and thus save costs, especially being as some of these aircraft were leased or used for relatively short periods of time.

Many of its earlier aircraft were invariably sourced from Southend operators, although they would generally only visit the airport for engineering purposes. Regular services were comprised mostly of Ford cargo flights from the Continent to Cardiff, freight flights between Blackpool and Ireland/the Isle of Man and newspaper flights between Dublin and Manchester, although newspaper services did run between Glasgow and Southend for a while using a pair of Heralds. However, despite Jane’s operating several types, they were never really satisfied with their earlier aircraft (apart from the rather rare Heralds) and later trialled the still plentiful Hawker Siddeley H.S.748, finding them to be extremely versatile and highly suitable for the kind of work their contracts demanded of them.

By the end of 1992, seven 748s had joined the fleet with the odd aircraft occasionally turning up for maintenance or short term storage at SEN. Several more were to follow over the coming years, while most of their other aircraft were subsequently disposed of or sent back to their lessors. A good number of these 748s would go on to fly for Parcelforce, while one aircraft was retained for passenger and other cargo operations. However in mid-1993, Jane’s upped from its home base and moved its engineering and operations centre to Liverpool, while its main base remained at Blackpool. Finally on September 27th 1993, Jane’s became Emerald Airways Ltd, a name that would better reflect its operations which were mostly centred around Ireland.

While beyond the scope of this website, this airline’s later history is of considerable interest. After the collapse of Emerald in 2006, attempts were made by Andy James to relaunch Jane’s Aviation. At the end of September 2008, the three remaining 748s (G-AYIM, G-OSOE, G-SOEI not to mention a leased An-26) were put to work on newspaper/cargo flights between Blackpool and the Isle of Man, however the loads were poor and within a week, the service had been pulled. The three 748s were then later dispatched to SEN where one would be broken for spares while the other two would be sold on to new owners.


Jane’s Aviation fleet from 1987 to 1993

H.S (Avro) 748

G-ATMI – 7/91 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

G-ATMJ – 7/92 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

G-BEJD – 7/92 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

G-BEJE – 7/92 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

G-BEKE – 9/92 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

G-BIUV – 9/92 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

G-BPDA – 10/91 to 9/93

TFR to Emerald Airways

Embraer EMB-110 Bandeirante

G-BHJY – 2/88 to 5/88

Leased from Alexandra Aviation

Douglas C-47 Dakota

G-AMPZ – 6/88 to 9/90

Sold to Air Atlantique

G-AMYJ – 7/88 to 9/90

Sold to Air Atlantique

Handley Page Herald

G-ATIG – 1/91 to 1/93

Sub-leased from BAF

G-BEYK – 12/90 to 2/93

Leased from Nordic Oil Services

Britten-Norman Islander

G-AXXJ – 4/90 to 8/90


G-BELF – 2/90 to 8/90

Sold to Flying Tiger Skydiving Club

G-BJSA – 12/87 to 3/88

First lease from Harvestair

Short 3-30

G-LEDN – 1/89 to 12/91

Leased from Short Brothers

Britten-Norman Trislander

G-OJAV – 3/90 to 4/92

Sold to Willowair


Do you have any other, interesting snippets of information about this airline’s SEN history or indeed, any pictures or paraphernalia that you would like to share? If so, then please contact us on saadinfomail@gmail.com

Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.