Nostalgia Themed Articles

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GAM Previews: 70 Years of the Gloster Meteor 5 March 1943 was a historic date for the British aerospace industry. Some 70 years on, Karl Drage looks back at the development of Britain’s first operational jet fighter aircraft, the Gloster Meteor.
GAM Previews: MASDC 1969 Established at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona, in 1946, the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group (AMARG - as it is currently known) is now home to more than 4,400 aircraft. Some of them are destined to never leave, their reusable parts removed to help keep other aircraft in the skies. Others may go on to serve foreign air arms, and a lucky few will even return to active US service. That is the AMARG of 2013, but what was it like at the end of the ‘60s? Lindsay Peacock once again opens up his archive to show us.
GAM Previews: Jet Provost T3A From the Cockpit 2012 saw Gareth Stringer fulfil a lifelong dream and fly in a fast jet. It all started with the JP3 at RAF Cosford, thanks to Neil McCarthy, and here's the first part of a story that will be continued next month.
GAM Previews: Republic's F-105 Thunderchief Gareth Stringer looks back at the life and times of the Republic F-105 Thunderchief, including memories from one Royal Air Force pilot who flew the mighty ‘Thud’, and the aircraft’s distinguished performances in the skies over Vietnam.
GAM Previews: Handley Page Victor at 60 The last of the V-bomber trilogy, the Handley Page Victor saw service with the Royal Air Force in more than one role. Gareth Stringer talks to several members of the Victor community, including a very close family member, about their memories and experiences of the aircraft.
GAM Previews: The Iron Lady - '558 Bounces Back to Complete Jubilee Season Gareth Stringer talks exclusively to Vulcan display pilot Bill Ramsey, as XH558 recovers from early season difficulties to complete 2012 in style with a ‘Jubilee Tour’ of the UK. Includes stunning air-to-air imagery from Frank Grealish.
GAM Previews: The Buccaneer Aviation Group (TBAG) It’s been out of RAF service for almost 20 years but, as Gareth Stringer found out, opportunities to see and feel the power of the Blackburn Buccaneer in the UK are still very much available.
Airshows >> UK: Cold War Jets Open Day 2012 - Review The Cold War Jets Collection at Bruntingthorpe held its second open day of the year over the traditional August bank holiday. Shaun Schofield donned his ear defenders and paid a visit.
Aviation Events >> Saunders Roe Princess 60th Anniversary Starting on 22 August 2012, residents of the Isle of Wight began celebrating the 60th anniversary of the first flight of the Saunders-Roe (SARO) SR.45 Princess flying boat with a ceremony and flypasts by a Cessna 182 Amphibian. GAR’s Karl Drage got airborne to capture some of the commemorations from above.
GAM Previews: Lockheed's T-33 Shooting Star Lindsay Peacock's photo archive is a gift that keeps on giving, and this time around he looks back at Lockheed's first jet aircraft - the unmistakable T-33 Shooting Star - a type which, despite first flying some 64 years ago, can still be found earning its keep in very small numbers to this day.
GAM Previews: Issue 9 - July 2012 With a new issue of Global Aviation Magazine now available, let's take a look at what's inside.....
Aviation Events >> Buccaneer S.2B XW544 Rollout Event at Bruntingthorpe Saturday 24 March 2012 was a very special day for the Bruntingthorpe-based Buccaneer Aviation Group, as its members rolled out to the public their immaculate Buccaneer S.2B XW544, looking stunning in its new 16 Squadron paint scheme. Greg Marsh guest reports on the event for GAR, with photography by Elliott Marsh.
GAM Previews: WIWOL - When I Was On Lightnings Part 2 In this, the second part of his feature on the English Electric Lightning, Gareth Stringer asked Jon Fynes about squadron life and his season displaying the aircraft in 1987 as the last Royal Air Force pilot to do so.
GAM Previews: The Last USN F-14 Tomcat Display On September 25th 2005 at approximately 2:52pm, one of the most iconic and popular fast jet displays on the United States airshow circuit came to an end. Carrying the star spangled banner and taxying in in front of an appreciative audience, the stunning retro-schemed F-14D Tomcat, coded AD-160 of VF-101 ‘Grim Reapers’ and flown by Lieutenants Jack ‘Rocco’ Tangredi and Joseph ‘Smokin’ Joe Ruzicka, had given the crowd at the 2005 NAS Oceana Airshow their last ever public Tomcat display. It was a moment tinged with great sadness and yet celebration of a superb service career with the United States Navy. Global Aviation Magazine’s Glenn Beasley was there.
GAM Previews: Mildenhall's C-135s - Then and Now RAF Mildenhall’s association with Boeing’s venerable ‘135 is a long one, spanning some five decades, and here Bob Archer takes a look back at some of the aircraft that have been found at the Suffolk airfield through the years. All images Bob Archer or The Bob Archer Collection.
GAM Previews: WIWOL - When I Was On Lightings The English Electric Lightning. A true classic from the Cold War, a supersonic interceptor that remained in Royal Air Force service from 1959 until 1988 and is still remembered fondly by all those who saw it. But what was the aircraft like to fly? Gareth Stringer travelled to the RAF Museum at Cosford to meet someone who would be able to tell him exactly that.
GAM Previews: USAF Piston-Power With an archive full of stunning imagery from a different time, Lindsay Peacock once again delves right into it as this time he celebrates USAF Piston-Power.
Aviation History >> London Heathrow Airport 1979 Part 2 1979 was Paul Filmer's first year at work and his first year at British Airways and, having so many pictures to show for it, we decided to split the story in half. Here he follows on from Heathrow Airport 1979 Part 1 and recalls more memories from London.
GAM Previews: The Lockheed S-3 Viking at 40 January 2012 marks the 40th anniversary of the first flight of the Lockheed S-3 Viking. Originally conceived as a carrier-borne anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft, in later years it assumed several other specialised roles and had a surprisingly long service career; even today the Viking remains in service, albeit in very small numbers. Paul Dunn finds out more.
Aviation History >> London Heathrow Airport 1979 Part 1 During 1979 I took my first full-time job straight out of school at 16 years old, working for British Airways at Heathrow Airport. With this I suddenly gained access to the maintenance areas at the Hatton Cross complex, where I would ride by bicycle around to the old BEA maintenance area where there were often exotic biz-jets. Paul Filmer follows on from Heathrow Airport 1978 and recalls more adventures from London.
GAM Previews: A Trip Down Memory Lane - Bill Ramsey on Sqn Ldr Ken 'Jacko' Jackson In the second instalment of our Trip Down Memory Lane column, we are delighted to hear from Royal Air Force QFI and Vulcan display pilot Bill Ramsey as he looks back on happy memories of Squadron Leader Ken 'Jacko' Jackson, a former Spitfire and Hastings pilot and Officer Commanding Battle of Britain Memorial Flight.
Military Aviation >> Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) Culdrose - Then & Now GAR staffer and former Royal Navy Sea King pilot Chris Wood recently paid a nostalgic visit to his old stomping ground of RNAS Culdrose in west Cornwall, 25 year after he left. Here he describes how things have changed.
Aviation History >> London Heathrow Airport 1978 I've always lived close to Heathrow Airport after being born in the old Harlington Maternity Hospital and have lived in both Hayes and Harlington at various times. The sound and smell of the old kerosene burners most likely permeated into my blood, fuelling my interest in aviation. Paul Filmer takes us back to 1978 in the first in a series highlighting personal experiences at London's premier airport.
Airshows >> UK: Airshow Archive Part 5 - Biggin Hill Battle of Britain Open Days There's no Biggin Hill Air Fair review to write, this time, so Paul Fiddian looks back at the three outstanding Battle of Britain Open Days staged at Biggin Hill in the mid-1990s. Between them, these shows produced a glittering array of historic aircraft, foreign military fliers and unforgettable airshow moments.
Military Aviation >> Royal Air Force: Flying The Sepecat Jaguar - 'In Memory of a Jag Mate' It's nearly four years since the Royal Air Force retired the Sepecat Jaguar and with it one of our most capable and deployable ground attack and reconnaissance platforms. Gareth Stringer speaks to two of the men who flew it while Wing Commander John Sullivan pays tribute to the late Group Captain Tom Barrett. Images as credited.
Aviation History >> D-Day and Arnhem Glider Operations 67 years ago to the day, Paul Fiddian's granddad was being towed over the Channel to participate in one of the most famous operations of WW2: D-Day. In this article, he tells the story of his flying career, which took him from the green fields of England to the muddy grounds of Arnhem and back again.
Aircraft History: Boeing C-97 Aviation photographer and journalist Lindsay Peacock has an archive of imagery that's the envy of almost all of his fellow snappers. Here he shares with you, the Global Aviation Resource readership, his fascination with the Boeing C-97 'Strat'.
Military Aviation >> Royal Air Force > Tornado F.3: Airshow Performer The Tornado ADV thrilled airshow audiences for precisely thirty years and no retirement series would have been complete without a look at this secondary, but high profile, role for the jet. Gareth Stringer takes a look back at the aircraft's air display history and talks to one man lucky enough to have been part of it. Images as credited.
Airshow Archive Part 4: Farnborough International 90 Paul Fiddian journeys back to the scene of Farnborough International 1990, where torrents of trainers, a frenzy of foreign fighters and the world's largest aircraft mixed to produce a stunning airshow.
Military Aviation >> History > Gulf War 20th: Tornado F.3 Continuing our series to mark the 20th anniversary of the Gulf War, we are delighted to welcome former RAF fast jet pilot, author and photographer Ian Black. Ian was flying the Tornado F.3 when Iraq invaded Kuwait and here writes exclusively for GAR on what followed for him and his colleagues. Images as credited.
Military Aviation >> History > Gulf War 20th: Buccaneer, a pilot’s eye view. Investigating the role of the Buccaneer in Gulf War 1, Gareth Stringer talks to Wg Cdr John Sullivan who, on his first front line tour as a Royal Air Force pilot, flew combat sorties from Muharraq Air Base in Bahrain. Images as credited.
Airshow Archive Part 3: Intrepid Aviation Airshow 1999 In our latest airshow retrospective feature, Paul Fiddian takes us back more than a decade to North Weald and the 1999 Intrepid Aviation Airshow. Images as credited.
Gulf War 20th - Tornado GR.1 Part 2 Last week we looked at the deployment and operation of the Tornado GR.1 to the Gulf War from the perspective of the man who commanded that detachment and its Senior Engineering Officer. This week’s 20th anniversary feature takes a look at the same aircraft but from two very different angles – that of GR.1 navigator and GR.1A recce pilot. Gareth Stringer reports with images as credited.
Gulf War 20th - Tornado GR.1 Part 1 A little over 20 years ago, on the 17th January 1991, coalition forces commenced the air war which marked the start of the campaign to wrestle Kuwait from Iraq’s hands following the invasion of August 1990. In the first of a series of features marking the anniversary, Gareth Stringer talks to some of those involved with the Royal Air Force’s deployment of Tornado GR.1s to look back at its operations during Desert Storm. Images as credited.
Airshow Archive Part 2: Air Fete 87 Gareth Stringer takes us back to Mildenhall and its famous Air Fete, with this feature taking a look at the 1987 event. Additional imagery courtesy of Nigel Watson.
Legendary Lancaster Celebrates 70th The 9th January 1941 saw the Avro Lancaster take to the air for the first time and, to mark this significant 70th anniversary, Gareth Stringer takes a look at the history of the aircraft and speaks to someone who has flown it. Images as credited.
Sharjah - Just like Moscow but in the desert.... In 2004 Paul Dopson visited Sharjah in the UAE, then home to many Russian repair companies and exotic Russian designed aircraft from far flung parts of the world.
Airshow Archive Part 1: IAT 95 - The Victory Airshow
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In the first of what will be a regular series of Airshow Archive features, Mark Broadbent takes a look back at the International Air Tattoo 95 - The Victory Airshow, one of the finest events in the Tattoo's 40-year history and one of the best airshows ever staged in the UK.
The F-14 Tomcat at 40
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The 21st December 2010 marks the 40th anniversary of the first flight of the F-14 Tomcat. Looking back on the history of the type with input from those who were fortunate enough to fly her, Glenn Beasley celebrates the birthday of a US Navy icon. Additional imagery from John Higgins.
The Harrier >> David Morgan Part Three: Sea Harrier Over The Falklands - The Final Engagement
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In the spring of 1982 David Morgan had just started an exchange tour with the Royal Navy flying Sea Harriers at RNAS Yeovilton. His conversion was rudely cut short on 2nd April when Argentine forces invaded the Falkland Islands. He took part in the first raid on Stanley Airfield on 1st May, getting shot through the tail fin, and flew another 54 operational SHAR missions (and two Wessex flights!) before the end of the conflict on 14th June. He was credited with sinking one enemy vessel as well as shooting down two helicopters and two A-4 Skyhawks. This, in the last of three GAR features courtesy of David himself, is the story of the final air engagement of the war. Images as credited.
The F-111's Nellis Swansong - Red Flag 09-3
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Last weekend marked the sad retirement of the World's last remaining F-111s. Last year the Australian Air Force F-111C Aardvarks made the long trek to deploy to Red Flag for the last time and Paul Filmer travelled to the edge of the vast Nellis ranges to try and catch up with the oldest swingers in town...
The Harrier >> David Morgan Part Two: Sea Harrier Engagement at Shag Cove
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In this, the second piece kindly supplied to GAR courtesy of Lt Cdr David Morgan DSC, we continue our look at the Sea Harrier's success in the skies over the Falklands during the conflict of 1982. In this thrilling tale, David relates an encounter with rotary elements of the Argentine Air Force on the 23rd May. Images as credited.
The Harrier: Test Pilot John Farley on the P.1127 and Short SC.1
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With the Harrier's impending retirement from UK military service, Global Aviation Resource has been busy preparing a number of features looking at the career of one the most iconic aircraft in aviation history. For this feature we are delighted to welcome Harrier test pilot John Farley as he takes us back to the 1960s for a close look at Hawker's P.1127 prototype and the Short SC.1 VSTOL research aircraft. Images as credited.
The Harrier >> David Morgan: The Sea Harrier's Baptism of Fire
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For many the Falklands War of 1982 was the Sea Harrier's finest hour. Lt Cdr David Morgan DSC served with 899 NAS during the conflict and tells that story in a vivid memoir entitled
The Harrier: The History of an Icon
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It's a name instantly recognisable to many, regardless of their interest in aviation, but one that will soon be consigned to the history books in this country when, after more than forty years service, the aircraft is cut from the UK military as a result of the Strategic Defence and Security Review. Gareth Stringer looks back at the Harrier's development and distinguished career with the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy. Images as credited.
Ostend and Dinard Time-Machine
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Delving back into my older photos I have two sets that are from France and Belgium and mostly came about because I was flying a Cessna 152 into the respective airports. I was only casually taking photos during this period unlike in the 1980s and currently. Paul Filmer dips into his archives to show some interesting aircraft from the 1990s.
Cold War Jets Open Day Located a few miles south of Leicester, Bruntingthorpe, a former RAF and USAF bomber base and now a private airfield, is home to a collection of some of the most iconic British jets of the Cold War era. Not only that, most are maintained in a taxi-able condition. John Higgins attended the latest Cold War Jets Open Day to report for GAR.
Airshows - a Military Retrospective Context is everything. Politics, business, sport, relationships – everything is subject to background environments. Airshows are no different and guest contributor Mark Broadbent offers his thoughts in this, his first piece for Global Aviation Resource.
Queen of the Skies at 40
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Boeing’s Queen of the Skies recently notched up an incredible 40 years of airline service. GAR’s Paul Dunn is a huge fan of the 747. But then, he is unashamedly rather biased! Images as credited.
Views from the Viper's Cockpit
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“Vipers in the Storm”, Keith Rosenkranz’s personal account of flying the F-16 in the first Gulf War, is one of the most fascinating titles on the subject of modern air warfare. Gareth Stringer made contact with ‘Rosey’ and took the opportunity to ask him for some thoughts on flying the legendary Fighting Falcon. Images – as credited.
South Atlantic - The Early Years Shortly after GAR published Gareth Stringer's feature on Typhoon's arrival in the Falklands we received an email from one Andy Matheson who, it turned out, had worked on the construction of Mount Pleasant Airfield. Andy subsequently sent GAR some images of his time in the South Atlantic and we quickly realised that they were more than worthy of a wider-audience, asking Andy if he would like to contribute some words to go with them. This feature is the result. Words and images courtesy of Andy Matheson.
Detroit, Willow-Run Cargo Operations Back in the late 70s early 80s, Detroit Willow-Run was the place to visit with herds of propliners resting by day and working at night. Paul Filmer reminisces on those trips as a teenager and compares the operations from then and now.