Bristol 307 Britannia – c/n 12920

With Air Charter from Mar 1959 to Jul 1960

The second and last of Air Charter’s Britannias arrived three months after the airline had been acquired by BUA, although she would continue to operate on behalf of ACL, not to mention retain the honour of being the very last aircraft to be painted in this airline’s livery, the days of which were well and truly numbered. Prior to delivery, conversion work to 307 series standard was undertaken, this involving an upgrade to more powerful Proteus engines plus a few other minor modifications. Charlie Delta was then flown to Southend on March 24th 1959 where she was fitted out to Air Charter’s requirements after which, she would remain idle at the airport for two months before finally being ferried to Stansted on May 25th. The following day crew training ensued and on the 27th, she would finally fly her first revenue service for the airline between Stansted and Lisbon, this being repeated again in the afternoon.

Ultimately, the two Britannias were tasked with maintaining the long distance trooping routes to the Far-East and Australasia which would often see this aircraft making regular, round the world trips. The remote Christmas Island was another trooping destination frequented occasionally by both Charlie Delta and Charlie Echo. However, Middle Eastern trips were still flown too, with Charlie Delta being seen trooping at RAF Gazalah in Aden on March 28th 1960. Over the coming years, this Britannia would continue to visit Southend for engineering purposes, although operations would more increasingly be confined to London Airport (later Heathrow) being as towards the end of 1959, Air Charter’s base at Stansted was being wound down by its new owner BUA. By the middle of the ’60s, a large number of ex-Air Charter aircraft were being towed into the Aviation Traders hangar at Southend where they were summarily painted up in BUA colours. Britannia Charlie Delta was no exception to this rule and by July, she had been refinished and title had been transferred to her new owner.


History of G-ANCD

6/57 to 3/59

Bristol Aircraft Ltd

3/59 to 7/60

Air Charter Ltd

7/60 to 1/69

TFR to British United

1/69 to 7/73

Lloyd International

7/73 to 11/74

Aivex Holdings Ltd

11/74 to 2/77

Gemini Air Transport Ltd

2/77 to 8/79

Westwings Aviation Services

8/79 to 10/82

Gaylan Air Cargo


WFU Bournemouth 8/82 and B/U 10/82


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Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.