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Dan-Air Skyways … revisited




I like web sites dedicated to airlines that no longer operate – they provide images of aircraft you don’t see any more and, better still, the stories and camaraderie of former staff bring out how involved and proud they were of their jobs and the service they provided. A good example is the Pan-Am site ‘Everything Pan-Am’.


There is a similar site for the airline Dan-Air which is less well known outside Europe, I suspect, than Pan-Am, but relevant to me as my first flight was in a Hawker Siddeley 748 of Dan-Air Skyways.



HS 748 departure from Lydd, default FS2004



I remember most clearly from the flight the large over-wing engines and props. Then I recalled more of the original trip - looking out of the window as we crossed the Channel, the views of the very different fields of Normandy. It was my first enjoyment of international travel by air.


It was advertised at the time as a less expensive alternative flight from London to Paris. It was not quite that; the trip started in London at Victoria Station by coach to Ashford, Kent quite near the coast where passengers transferred to the aircraft for a short hop over to Beauvais in Normandy. It then finished the journey by coach into the centre of Paris. Almost as much road travel as by air, but for new air travellers it provided a very convenient city centre to city centre journey!


Dan-Air had a number of ‘firsts’ – everything from the largest fleet of De Havilland Comets to transporting the first live dolphin and, in Europe, putting female pilots on the flight deck of commercial jets. Yvonne Sintes and Elizabeth Overbury were both Dan-Air pilots.


So I was pleasantly surprised to find in the Flightsim library a really nice HS 748 package with a set of Dan-Air liveries including the Skyways colours (hs748v1f.zip). Released in 2006 by the team of Rick Piper, Fraser McKay, David Maltby, Saverio Maurri and Eric Marciano, it is a nice freeware aircraft that is as detailed and complex as many payware aircraft you can find today.


There are still a few HS 748 aircraft operating around the world; you can find videos of some of them on YouTube. And you can try in MSFS to fly this veteran yourself!


Allan Jones




Allan Jones is the author of In a Moon’s Course, an ebook of World War II flight stories/plans of the Air Transport Auxiliary, available at Amazon, Kobo, W.H. Smith and other ebook online suppliers.


The Flight. I revisited my first flight by departing from Lydd, now called London Ashford Airport EGMD, although the Dan-Air memorabilia site shows that in 1972-74, Lympne Airfield EGMK (pronounced ‘Limm’) was the base for the Skyways flight. Both are close to Ashford. I made the trip using FS2004, as it has more detailed airport features at Lydd and Beauvais than the default FSX (I did not look for any airport add-ons) but there are FSX versions available also.



Landing at Beauvais FS2004

Edited by allanj12



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