Viking G-AJFR2

Vickers 627 Viking – c/n 236

With Tradair from Feb 1958 to Dec 1962

Foxtrot Romeo was the second aircraft to be purchased from Airwork in February 1958 although she would become the first Viking to go into service with Tradair. Initially, she would start her service life fitted out in a high density yet comfortable, 36 seat cabin which could be quickly removed or installed as and when required, although as Tradair went on to procure more aircraft she would for the most be employed as a pure freighter along with her sister ship Foxtrot Sierra. In her first year, she operated a full summer season of mixed passenger/cargo flights before she was removed from service to have her freight door installed by BKS Engineering, this taking place during December 1958.

Among her more notable flights were the inaugural services between Southend to Perpignan and Pisa in June 1958 and in the same month she became involved in the emergency meat airlift brought about by the 1958 Foot and Mouth outbreak, which saw her making a multitude of trips to and from Rotterdam accompanied by Foxtrot Sierra. However in December 1960, she suffered engine failure on a flight from Lyons although she landed safely at Le Bourget. Despite her heavy work load for Tradair, Foxtrot Romeo was leased to Lufthansa several times during 1961 for Heathrow to Frankfurt night cargo flights. In the same year, she became a regular sight on the well trafficked route between Southend and Malmö, which would eventually see her making cargo trips to this destination twice a week.

While she was primarily reserved for cargo flights, FR would continue to help out on the I.T charter routes when bookings were going through the roof, although for the most, she continued to fly freight between Malmö, Luxembourg and Odense. However, by the middle of 1961 with the creditors looming, her future along with that of the airline, looked most uncertain and by the end of 1962, the situation had become terminal. She flew her last Tradair service to Malmo on the 23th November 1962 and was eventually transferred to her new owner, Channel Airways on 20th December 1962.

G-AJFR’s service life was extremely well documented and she was noted at the following locations

Rotterdam, Basle, Le Bourget and Antwerp – 3/58 (Pax)

Basle – 4/58 (Cargo)

Antwerp, Dusseldorf and Nice – 4/58 (Pax)

Rotterdam – 5/58 (Cargo – Lettuce)

Le Bourget and Malmö5/58 (Pax)

Malta, Pisa, Perpinan, Gibraltar and Lyons – 6/58 (Pax)

Rotterdam – 6/58 (Cargo – Meat)

Pisa, Lyons, Nice and Palma – 7/58 (Pax)

Gibraltar, Nice, Pisa and Tarbes – 8/58 (Pax)

Bremen, Antwerp and Basle – 9/58 (Pax)

Amsterdam – 12/58 (Pax)

Amsterdam, Bremen and Dusseldorf – 1/59 (Cargo)

Pisa, Lyons, Gibraltar, Nice and Palma – 5,6,7 and 8/59

Manchester and Dublin – 10/59 (Cargo – Newspapers)

Perpignon – 6/60 (Pax)

Nutts Corner and Manchester – 7/60 (Cargo – Newspapers)

Malmö11/60 (Cargo – Clothing)

Malmö12/60 (Cargo)

Sylt – 12/60 (Pax)

Le Torquet – 12/60 (Engine Failure)

Malmö1/61 (Cargo)

Heathrow and Frankfurt 2,3,4 and 5/61 (Cargo – Lufthansa)

Dublin and Le Bourget – 3/61 (Cargo)

Amsterdam, Dublin and Le Bourget – 4/61 (Cargo)

Bergen, Luxembourg, Manchester, Newcastle and Zurich – 4/61 (Pax)

Benbecula and Dusseldorf – 5/61 (Trooping)

Le Bourget and Rotterdam – 5/61 (Pax)

Malmö 11 and 12/61 (Cargo)

Malmö1,2,3 and 4/62 (Cargo)

Perpignon and Rotterdam – 4/62 (Pax)

Maastricht and Manchester – 6/62 (Pax)

Luxembourg and Odense – 8/62 (Cargo)

Gatwick and Exeter – 10/62 (Cargo – Newspapers)

Malmo and Odense – 11/62 (Cargo)


History of G-AJFR

7/47 to 2/58

Airwork Ltd

2/58 to 12/63

Tradair Ltd

12/63 to 4/66

Channel Airways Ltd


WFU at SEN 9/64 and later scrapped circa 4/66


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