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Miles Messenger memories

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  • l.garey
    Rank 5 Registered User

    Miles Messenger memories

    I have looked through the past threads and cannot find one specifically on the Miles Messenger, although they are of course mentioned in several threads: but perhaps I have missed one.
    Anyway, I recently found a photo dating from around 1950 of G-AIEK, which now flies as RG333. I was on the beach at Brancaster, Norfolk, UK with my family and a friend when this (white I think) Messenger landed on the hard sand, so we posed in front of it. At the time it belonged to Arthur Linnell at Wellingborough, according to my records. Apologies for the 2 young boys: at least we did not obscure the registration.
    Maybe the current operators could be interested in seeing this photo of what it was like when it was almost brand new (constructed 1946 I think).



    I later saw G-AIEK at Sywell in 1958 and at Le Zoute, Belgium, in 1959, when it was certainly white.

    My first flight ever was in another Messenger, from Westwood airfield in Peterborough, soon after. I think it was G-AKKC, that was based at Westwood and that I photographed there in about 1952.

    Last edited by l.garey; 28th November 2008, 08:19.
    Laurence
  • Bager1968
    Rank 5 Registered User

    #2
    Nice photos, and nice coincidence... a few minutes ago I was just looking at a cutaway drawing of the Messenger in Bill Gunston's book Classic WW II Aircraft Cutaways.

    This is the drawing of the initial version done by J.H.Clark for The Aeroplane magazine 20 April 1945.
    Germany, Austria and Italy are standing together in the middle of the pub, when Serbia bumps into Austria, and spills Austria's pint.

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    • low'n'slow
      Rank 5 Registered User

      #3
      May I add this pic to the thread?

      www.lightaircraftassociation.co.uk

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      • l.garey
        Rank 5 Registered User

        #4
        Thanks for that low'n'slow. Funny, I saw G-AKIN at Sywell on 12 April 1958 the same day I saw G-AIEK there. Is your photo a recent one, maybe at Sywell?
        Laurence

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        • Consul
          Rank 5 Registered User

          #5
          Ahhhh Miles! Of this manufacturer's products I've been lucky enough to fly in a Falcon, Magister and Messenger (though not a Gemini but would love to do that). Some idea of the experience in a Messenger can be gained from this cockpit view I took and here's also a landing shot of the machine I was in.
          Tim


          "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."(Mary Baker Eddy)

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          • low'n'slow
            Rank 5 Registered User

            #6
            Originally posted by l.garey View Post
            Thanks for that low'n'slow. Funny, I saw G-AKIN at Sywell on 12 April 1958 the same day I saw G-AIEK there. Is your photo a recent one, maybe at Sywell?
            Taken last year. Almost exactly 49 years to the day that you made your observation. G-AKIN has in fact been resident at Sywell since April 1952, which must be some kind of record!



            www.lightaircraftassociation.co.uk

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            • l.garey
              Rank 5 Registered User

              #7
              The Tipsy looks lovely too!

              Laurence
              Laurence

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              • low'n'slow
                Rank 5 Registered User

                #8
                Originally posted by l.garey View Post
                The Tipsy looks lovely too!

                Laurence
                I'd just polished it up to impress for its annual Permit inspection!
                www.lightaircraftassociation.co.uk

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                • Atcham Tower
                  Rank 5 Registered User

                  #9
                  And another one that almost certainly still exists, according to G-INFO, but non-airworthy. G-AILL at Speke circa 1960. Old RAF/FAA site with Bellman hangar in background, all long gone.
                  Attached Files

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                  • l.garey
                    Rank 5 Registered User

                    #10
                    I last saw G-AILL at the Biggin Air Fair in 1968.

                    Laurence
                    Laurence

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                    • Consul
                      Rank 5 Registered User

                      #11
                      Originally posted by Atcham Tower View Post
                      And another one that almost certainly still exists, according to G-INFO, but non-airworthy. G-AILL at Speke circa 1960. Old RAF/FAA site with Bellman hangar in background, all long gone.
                      It was once operated by the Waveney Flying Group (of which at one time in the 60s I was an honorary member). This Messenger ended up with Harold Best-Devereux and he reportedly had some strange plans for structurally altering the design. It sadly ended its days at Rush Green near Luton in a very bad way - the wings were apparently sawn off. Its mortal remains went their various ways - bits of fuselage were obtained to help in restoring another airframe. The vestiges of the outer wings do, it is believed, survive and it seems possible they could surface as part of composite static restoration with components from other machines; but to say 'ILL survives is a little generous. I've extracted some aspects of the above from an Air-Britain series of articles that covered the history of every Messenger airframe.
                      "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."(Mary Baker Eddy)

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                      • Atcham Tower
                        Rank 5 Registered User

                        #12
                        The CAA G-INFO site implies that it is still owned by Mr Best-Devereux. Reports of its survival are obviously exaggerated!

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                        • old shape
                          Senior Member

                          #13
                          Beautiful aeroplanes, from a very innovative company.
                          So innovative that the the Americans had to steal the design for Chuck Yaegers X plane from Miles, including the detachable cockpit. Sorry, they didn't steal it, we were forced to hand it over as part of the trade of secrets during the war. It was one way traffic though.

                          Wasn't there a Messenger based at Barton during the early 70's?

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                          • avion ancien
                            Rank 5 Registered User

                            #14
                            .............and here's Messenger G-AKEZ, on my side of la manche, many years ago. Perhaps taking its owners on a trip to the races or the casino?
                            Attached Files

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                            • John Aeroclub
                              Rank 5 Registered User

                              #15
                              Originally posted by avion ancien View Post
                              .............and here's Messenger G-AKEZ, on my side of la manche, many years ago. Perhaps taking its owners on a trip to the races or the casino?
                              Is this not the Messenger hiding behind the Norecrin in the Which aerodrome thread. Because behind the Messenger is an Ercoupe. Coincidence or was the aerodrome Deauville.

                              John

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                              • John Aeroclub
                                Rank 5 Registered User

                                #16
                                An unusual one, though not much to see.

                                John

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                                • T-21
                                  Rank 5 Registered User

                                  #17
                                  G-AJKL of ARI Propafloor of Luton was laying derelict in the early seventies behind the Luton Flying Club hangar, what happened to it ? also the wings of G-ALAW were suspended in the roof of the Skegness Ingoldmells hangar mid sixties.
                                  Fly with the eagles,or scratch with the chickens.

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                                  • l.garey
                                    Rank 5 Registered User

                                    #18
                                    G-ALAW was also one that used to hang around Westwood, between 1952 and 1960, although not actually based there I think. It was red.

                                    G-AJKL also flew around the same area: I saw it at RAF Upwood in 1954.

                                    Messengers seem to have liked flying across to Le Zoute: in August 1959 when I saw G-AIEK there, there were also visits from G-AHZT, G-AIDK and G-AJFC, all three of which I also saw at Sywell the previous year. Another at Sywell was G-AKIR.

                                    Laurence
                                    Laurence

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                                    • RPSmith
                                      ex Midland A.M. member

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by avion ancien View Post
                                      .............and here's Messenger G-AKEZ, on my side of la manche, many years ago. Perhaps taking its owners on a trip to the races or the casino?
                                      There seems to be other Miles types behind it - the race number on the nearest suggests Miles Hawk Speed Six G-ADGP??

                                      Roger Smith.
                                      A Blenheim, Beaufighter and Beaufort - together in one Museum. Who'd have thought that possible in 1967?

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                                      • avion ancien
                                        Rank 5 Registered User

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by John Aeroclub View Post
                                        Is this not the Messenger hiding behind the Norecrin in the Which aerodrome thread. Because behind the Messenger is an Ercoupe. Coincidence or was the aerodrome Deauville.

                                        John
                                        Well if that is the case, then it's a remarkable coincidence. The two photos were acquired in different countries decades apart! I'll now go back and compare the two photos, side by side, to see if they were taken at the same place and date. Oh, and by the way, I never did definitively identify the aerodrome in the 'which aerodrome' thread. Depite hours trawling the net, I failed to find a decent "face on" photo of the building at Toussus. Not even a modern image, let alone one of the building in the 1950s!

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