Viscount G-AOYN

Vickers 806 Viscount – c/n 263

With BAF/BWA from Feb 1981 to Feb 1997

Given Name – ‘Viscount Rotterdam’

Another of BAF’s, long-term stalwarts and a plane that had at one time, flown with two rather well known people at the helm during her time with BEA. On July 12th 1961, the world famous cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin took the helm of Yankee November accompanied by Captain Stanley Key who was at the time a relative unknown, although his name would later be unceremoniously propelled into the spotlight as the pilot in command of Trident G-ARPI which deep stalled and pancaked into the ground over Staines, just minutes after taking off from Heathrow on June 18th 1972.

Not long after her flight to SEN on the 16th February as BA9735M, she was put straight to work on oil contracts first with Oasis Oil and then with Occidental Oil of Libya. By May ’82, she Viscount G-AOYN 1was back with BAF and spent a year flying the usual mix of charter and cargo flights for her owner to destinations such as Dusseldorf and Basle during July and August 1982 respectively. Her next lease would see her going to Polar Airways for several days at the end of April 1983 while their own Viscount was undergoing servicing and maintenance. During mid-1983, the unpopular ‘reverse bee’ stripes were removed and YN operated for a while in a plain blue and white livery with the word ‘Aerolink’ painted on her nose. For the time being, she would be seen at many domestic airports being noted at Glasgow during August and Coventry in October running freight services for British Midland.

Then, in January 1984, YN was transferred to one of Keegan’s other concerns – Panavia Air Cargo – although the plane would remain with BAF under lease until she again returned to the airline in August 1989. During this period, she carried out a variety ofcapital-visc-g-aoyn freight and passenger flights to such places as Coventry, East Midlands, Glasgow, Jersey, Luton, Maastricht, Manchester and Rotterdam. While many of her duties were carried out on behalf of BAF, she was noted with ‘Capital’ titles during March 1989, having been sub-leased to fly spring and summer flights on the Luton -Dublin sector. On her return to BAF, YN would become something of a ‘testbed’ for BAF’s, final red, white and blue livery and from late 1989 through to 1990, she could be seen sporting the ‘Stylised BAF Livery’ (see the BAF history page for more info) with minor changes being implemented, especially to her rudder embellishments.

Another milestone in Yankee November’s history came on 29th July 1990 when she flew a group of the ‘Friends of Steven Piercey’ from Northolt to Paris to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the first Viscount service. Highlights of this trip can be seen by clicking on the video link below...

G-AOYN – Northolt to Le Bourget Trip

While Viscounts were slowly being pulled from service at an ever increasing rate, YN soldiered on and by 1993, she was only one of 10 Viscounts left G-AOYN4flying in the UK. In April of the same year, BAF became British World, the name change being the only significant alteration that was eventually made to the aircraft’s livery although YN would retain her BAF titles and was seen at Coventry in July 1994 still bearing the old name. However on the 18th April 1993, she was off on yet another enthusiasts charter with Capt Ray Piercey (Ret) among the guests on board. Capt Piercey was the father of Stephen Piercey (the namesake of Viscount G-APIM) who tragically lost his life in a mid air collision, doing the job that he so adored). The flight itself took off from SEN after which it overflew STN before landing at Duxford. Again, you can see the highlights by clicking on the video link below…

G-AOYN Trip to Duxford

Eventually, all but two of the remaining Viscounts were relegated to freight duties and in 1994, six of these aircraft were refinished in a ‘Parcelforce’ G-OPAS1post office red livery. G-AOYN then became a designation of the past as she took on the new registration ‘G-OPAS’ to reflect her new role which she would remain in for two more years. However by 1996, these aircraft really were beginning to show their age and they were slowly withdrawn from service, ‘YN’ being the first of the ‘Parcelforce’ aircraft to meet her demise. Finally, she was WFU after more than 15 years of faithful service with BAF/BWA and gradually stripped of parts to keep the others flying. She languished for another 8 months until eventually, she was JCB’d to death during Feburary 1997 although the cockpit was retained after which it entered preservation, first at Duxford before being moved to Bournemouth Aviation Museum where it resides as of 2016.


History of G-AOYN

3/58 – 12/71


12/71 – 4/74

Cambrian Airways

4/74 – 4/80

British Airways (TFR)

(Stored at Rhoose, Cardiff from 4/80 to 2/81)

2/81 – 2/97

BAF/BWA (Re-reg as G-OPAS 10/94)


WFU at SEN 6/96 – B/U 2/97

Cockpit still extant at the Bournemouth Aviation Museum.


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Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.