G-AOHT

viscount-g-aoht-bee

Vickers 802 Viscount – c/n 168

With BAF from Jul 1981 to May 1984 & Aug 1985 to Mar 1991

Given Name – ‘Viscount Carol’

Hotel Tango had a rather interesting, if somewhat short career with BAF, which saw her spending a period of time with the Viscount G-AOHT NZfledgling, Virgin Airways, not to mention a rather long trip that took her to the other side of the world, only for her to return a few months later. She was also one of the few Viscounts never to be painted in the well renowned, red, white and blue BAF livery. In September 1981 (a couple of months after her arrival at SEN) G-AOHT was painted in ‘Skybus’ colours after which she was delivered to her prospective new owner, Aqua Avia of New Zealand. However, a dispute amongst the relevant parties (which included Air NZ and the NZ equivalent of our CAA) saw the deal fall through and by the December 1981, she had been reclaimed by BAF and was subsequently leased on to Bouraq Airlines in Indonesia.

By April of the following year, she was back at Southend where she received a BAF ‘Bee’ paint job and underwent checks. The next four months would be the only time that she would bear a full BAF livery and titles and she flew a number of the polar-visc-g-aohtcontinental routes including a number of visits to Basle during May and June and a visit to Dusseldorf in October. However, in August 1982 she was leased on to another company, this time to Polar Airways where she would be put to work flying freight for BMA between East Midlands and a number of Benelux cities which included Amsterdam and Maastricht. However, it would seem that the New Zealand ‘curse’ had firmly attached itself to HT and by April 1983 Polar had also collapsed. The aircraft, while having been purchased by Polar in March, was then leased back to BAF by the receivers and HT would later be seen at SEN during June 1983 with both her interior panelling and Polar titles removed, although the ‘Aerolink’ titles remained on her nose, this as the result of her carrying out work for Pandair..

In May 1984, HT returned to Polar’s receivers who then sold her on to Euroair who in turn sub-leased her to a couple of other airlines until eventually, she ended upViscount G-AOHT with the aforementioned Virgin who from April 1985, leased her to fly their Maastricht-Gatwick route. By August 1985, she was back with BAF and resumed the BMA flights from East Midlands and Coventry in a Virgin livery without titles until the following May, after which she was finally withdrawn from use. As with most expired Viscounts, she languished outside the Jadepoint hangar for several months before becoming the first of several airframes to be taken to what would become a ‘graveyard’ for old Viscounts located to the rear of Southend Airport, west of the old 15/33 runway. She would be joined a few months later by G-BNAA and G-AOYL, all of which were slowly pulled apart before meeting their demise. HT was finally scrapped in March 1991.

 

History of G-AOHT

7/57 to 4/74

B.E.A

4/74 to 4/80

British Airways

4/80 to 7/81

Stored at Cardiff, Wales

7/81 to 9/81

BAF

9/81 to 12/81

Aqua Avia as ZK-SKY

12/81 to 8/82

BAF as G-AOHT

8/82 to 5/84

Polar Airways

(Leased back to BAF)

5/84 to 8/85

Euroair

8/85 to 3/91

BAF

Fate

WFU at SEN 7/87 and Scrapped 3/91

 

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