Airlines of Great Britain – Part 3

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Written by Charlie Dolan

As I continued with my romp through the British Iles in my collection, I came up with these ten carriers for the May installation. Two of these airlines operated the De Havilland Comet after the fatal design flaws had been identified and corrected.  Those were Channel Airways and Dan-Air London. The Comet, redesigned after its introduction in the mid-1950s served BOAC well and went on to serve these carriers well as it did for Middle East Airlines, Mexicana, BEA, Olympic, and East African Airways.

Channel Airways CW 1946 – 1972

Channel Airways, Dan-Air London, Jersey European Airways and G B Airways were scheduled carriers. Highland Express was conceived as a scheduled airline, but with a fleet of only one Boeing 747-400, that vision could not be realized. The remaining carriers were charter companies, with Heavylift providing specialized cargo services utilizing a fleet that included Shorts Belfast, Boeing 707, and Antonov AN124-100 aircraft.

Dan-Air London DA DAN 1953 – 1992
To BA

Both Dan-Air London and G B Airways had their backgrounds in marine shipping and brokerage firms. Their insignia feature designs resembling the “house” flags of shipping lines.

Donaldson Int’l Airways DI 1968 – 1974
Excalibur Airways EXC EQ 1992 -1996
Flying Colours MT FCL 1996 – 2000
To Thomas Cook
G B Airways GT GBL 1931 – 2008
To Easy Jet
Heavylift Cargo Airways 1978 – 2006
Invicta Int’l Airways IM 1964 – 1982
Jersey European Airways BE BEE 1979 – 2020
To Flybe

Flying Colours, Excalibur, Donaldson and Invicta were primarily charter operations.

Highland Express Airways VY TTN 1984 – 1987

I’m sure not if the insignia of Highland Express is a pilot wing or a jacket brevet used by cabin or ground staff. It is one of the only insignia of that airline that I have seen. Any information about it would be appreciated.

Hope you enjoy this installation. More British carriers to follow shortly.

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