South West Aviation

Operated from Aug 1966 to Oct 1972

Main Base – Exeter

Founder/Director – Mr.W.F Andrews, Mr.R. McDonald and Mr.Faire

Beginning life as a small taxi service which operated mostly around the South West of England and Wales, this airline would eventually acquire a couple of Shorts Skyvans (one leased and one purchased) with which they would use to expand into freight services mostly from Bristol and Exeter. With the leased Skyvan due to be returned to Short Brothers at the beginning of 1969, further equipment was sought out and by July 1968, South West had procured a larger and more capable C-47 with a second example arriving in May 1969. During this time, operations were mostly confined to Western England and Ireland although by mid-1969, South West was operating out of Aberdeen, Norwich and Teesside in support of drilling by American oil companies in the North Sea.

Indeed, while South West would eventually visit a good number of airfields around the country, visits to SEN were few and far between, that was until October 1969 when the airline made a flurry of trips to the airport carrying freight. A small number of freight flights operated on behalf of the Ford Motor Company are also believed to have taken place during 1971. However by early 1972, South West had been taken over by a consortium of businessmen who wanted to modernise the airline by starting Viscount operations, although this idea eventually came to nothing and by October the airline and its sole remaining Dakota (G-ABPC) had been sold on to Air Freight which continued to operate this aircraft regularly in and out of SEN during the early to mid-70s.

 

South West Aviation fleet from 1969 to 1971

(Only those aircraft that were likely to have visited SEN are listed)

Douglas C-47 Dakota

G-AMYJ*– 5/69 to 9/72

Sold to Intra Jersey Airways

G-ABPC*– 7/68 to 10/72

Sold to Air Freight

 

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.