AIRSPEED AMBASSADOR POST-WAR PIONEER

The Ambassador brought luxury flying to BEA but also gained notoriety, as Stephen Skinner reports.

img_64-1_144.jpg
Dan-Air built up a fleet of nine Ambassadors becoming, after BEA, the largest operator of the type. The first aircraft joined its fleet in 1961 and the type served for ten years.
AirTeamImages.com/ATICollection

Britain planned for peace in some of the bleakest days of World War Two. Designs of how civil aviation could look took shape as early as 1942 when a committee chaired by Lord Brabazon drew up speciflcations for production of post-war airliners.

The British Government had seen the country would be disadvantaged when hostilities ended because aircraft production was concentrated on combat types while the Americans were developing military transports.

In what was considered a surprise move, in 1943 the committee chose Airspeed to build a type of aircraft it had identifled as being required, even though the company had little experience in metal structures and overseas markets.

Become a Premium Member to Read More

This is a premium article and requires an active Key.Aero subscription to view.

I’m an existing member, sign me in!

I don’t have a subscription…

Enjoy the following subscriber only benefits:

  • Unlimited access to all KeyAero content
  • Exclusive in-depth articles and analysis, videos, quizzes added daily
  • A fully searchable archive – boasting hundreds of thousands of pieces of quality aviation content
  • Access to read all our leading aviation magazines online - meaning you can enjoy the likes of FlyPast, Aeroplane Monthly, AirForces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, Aviation News, Airports of the World, PC Pilot and Airliner World - as soon as they leave the editor’s desk.
  • Access on any device- anywhere, anytime
  • Choose from our offers below