Aviation Traders ATL.98A Carvair – c/n 10/10382

With BUAF/BAF from Aug 1963 to Mar 1969 & Mar 1973 to Feb 1975

Given Names – ‘Channel Bridge’ and ‘Big Joe’

Of the many Carvairs that served with the CAB, BUAF or BAF succession of companies, Kilo Golf would be the only aircraft of its type to spend two separate careers with them. Arriving at Stansted on November 12th 1962 from Interocean as C-54 LX-BBP, she was summarily converted and rolled Carvair G-ASKG Alisudout of the hangar again at the end of July 1963. On August 6th, she was flown to Southend where she was handed over to BUAF who tended to put their new Carvairs straight into service on the day of their delivery. However, Kilo Golf would be an exception to this ‘rule’ and two days later, she was instead, sent off on lease to Italian outfit Alisud who had been champing at the bit to start vehicle ferry services between Palermo and Napoli. This small airline was provided with a BUAF crew and all the machinery required to carry out these services, including hi-lift loaders and after several days of setting everything up, ferry operations rolled into action on August 15th. Kilo Golf finally returned to Southend during the early part of February 1964. The Palermo route had not been a resounding success and as a result of this, any further extensions to the contract were thus cancelled.

After an overhaul with ATEL and a touching up of the aircraft’s livery, this Carvair finally entered service for the first time with BUAF on March 25th 1964, flying the Southend – Rotterdam route which, along with occasional trips to Ostend, would make up the Carvair G-ASKG Air Ferrybulk of her work for the rest of the summer. The following year would also see Kilo Golf making ‘deep penetration’ route trips, although being an ATL. 98A Carvair, it is likely that her wing weights were removed for these longer services. Then in November 1965, she would head off on a mission for the government as Richard John Goring relates “G-ASKG adopted Air Ferry titles (but retained the BUA livery) at the very end of 1965 and along with G-APNH joined the Zambia Oil Airlift operation brought about by the Southern Rhodesia UDI. Both Carvairs were based at Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania and the change of title seems to have been to avoid embarrassment, as BUA continued to operate its DC-6 ‘Africargo’ service through East Africa to Salisbury, Southern Rhodesia, throughout the crisis. I shot ‘SKG at Southend on 28 Dec 1965, just before she left for Tanzania.”

By March of 1966, this now, rather beaten up, war weary Carvair had returned to Southend for a much deserved overhaul. The following month, she was back in service with her owner on the scheduled, vehicle ferry routes and by the end of the year, she had been given the new sandstone and blueG-ASKG BUA livery of BUA. However, this period would see a downturn in demand for this unique, aerial transport service, especially on the routes to the inner continent, which ultimately forced BUAF to pull the plug on these ‘deep penetration’ services. Indeed, it would become Kilo Golf’s responsibility to fly the very last flight to the once, popular destination of Basle on February 27th 1967. Carvair services would eventually be resumed, albeit temporarily, in 1975, although Kilo Golf would ultimately play no part in this. In October 1967 came another shake up with BUAF becoming BAF. However, as far as Kilo Golf was concerned, she would continue to ply the cross-Channel routes and run the odd, ad-hoc charter, until eventually being sold to Cie Air Transport in March 1969.

However, this particular Carvair’s, Southend history does not end here and within a few weeks, she was back with BAF, having been repossessed from Cie due to payment issues. Kilo Golf was stored at Southend until the end of March, after which she was moved to G-ASKG TARLydd and remained there until a new owner could be found for the aircraft. Finally, in March 1970, this Carvair departed once more to France, now under the ownership of TAR (Transport Aeriens Reunis) as F-BRTP, although somewhat curiously, she was almost immediately leased back to BAF. For the next couple of years, Kilo Golf, or Tango Papa as she was now known, would fly in a modified Cie Air Transport livery with TAR logos and ‘On charter to BAF’ stencilled over the rear, passenger doors. Subtle changes to the livery would take place over the coming years too, with BAF logos eventually replacing those of TAR and almost three years to the day that she was sold to this French outfit, she would be repurchased by BAF.

Once more she was given an overhaul at Southend which involved a fitting of the high density, 55 seat cabin, while being adorned in the new, thick striped, BAF livery and by the summer she was back in service, however, her work loadCarvair G-ASKG would be more variable compared to past years and she was often seen at a number of British and European airports carrying out passenger or freight charters. Examples of such work include passenger charters to Glasgow during August 1973 and Southampton in July 1974, while freight runs would be made to such destinations as Leeds during September 1973 and Munich in July 1974. Normal services were even broken up by the odd airshow with Kilo Golf putting in a fine display at Biggin Hill on May 17th 1974. However, by the beginning of 1975, the demand for Carvair services was waning irrevocably and as a consequence of this, Kilo Golf was removed from service. By February, BAF had found a new owner for the aircraft and on the 23rd, she departed Southend for the last time, bound for Gabon.


History of G-ASKG

8/63 to 10/67

British United Air Ferries

10/67 to 3/69

British Air Ferries

3/69 to 6/69

Cie Air Transport as F-BRPT

6/69 to 3/73

Transportes Aeriens Reunis

3/73 to 2/75

British Air Ferries

2/75 to 6/80

Ste Anonyme de Construction as TN-ADX

6/80 to 3/93

ECL Air as 9Q-CTI

3/93 to 9/95

Transair Cargo


WFU at Kinshasa, Congo 7/95 and B/U 9/95


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