G-APEX

Viscount G-APEXa

Vickers 806 Viscount – c/n 381

With BAF/BWA from Mar 1981 to Mid-94

Given Name – ‘Viscount Sunseeker – Apparently NTU’

It is somewhat ironic that while G-APEX and her sister ship G-APEY had shared almost identical service lives and the same owners, one aircraft would end up being removed from service rather rapidly, while the other would continue to serve with BAF until the end of the 20th century. Echo X-Ray arrived at Southend with the first batch of ex-BEA Viscounts in March 1981, after which she was put to work on scheduled and chartered passenger flights flying occasionally from Southend and more frequently from an assortment of other British airports which included the East Midlands, Manchester and Nottingham.

Toward the autumn, it was possible that she spent a short stint on lease to Alidair flying oil workers between Aberdeen and Sumburgh with her being seen at the former location in September of this year. The winter however, would see her being fitted out with protective window panelling for freight runs, making a number of trips to Belfast during this time. The following year, she would be put to work flying mostly to the Channel Islands on behalf of Viscount Holidays although she could still be seen visiting a number of European airports, making several trips to Basle, both in ’82 and ’83. Then as during the previous winter, Echo X-Ray¬† was put to work freighting again.

However, in early 1984 her fortunes would take a turn for the worse as a routine engineering check revealed extensive corrosion within her wings andG-APWA - G-APEX on the main spar itself. Unfortunately, there was no other alternative but to withdraw her from use and like all other Viscounts that failed to make the grade, she was cannibalised for parts. EX sat for several years outside the former Jadepoint hangar at the rear of the airport (alongside Herald G-APWA which had been WFU a year earlier). Eventually, in 1990 her extremities were removed leaving only a fuselage and this was dragged round to the BAF carpark/spares yard where she was to sit for several more years. Her end finally came in 1994 when a restructuring of both BAF and the rear of the airport effectively determined her fate and what remained, was broken up. However, the exact date of her demise remains a mystery to this day.

 

History of G-APEX

6/58 to 12/69

B.E.A

12/69 to 11/70

B.K.S

11/70 to 4/74

Northeast Airlines

4/74 to 3/81

British Airways (TFR)

3/81 to ?/94

BAF

Fate

WFU at SEN 3/84 – B/U some time during the summer of 1994

 

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

Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.