Smuggling in the 1950's.

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Just read a book, author and subject not germane to the thread where she mentions her father taking her on smuggling trips in his plane across the Channel in the '50's. The return cargo was brandy, cigarettes and books which were sold in London. Anybody have any information on the extent of these activities in that period or have similar stories on this subject? :)
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So that would now be Laddingford International airport? :D
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Really ? "Kent Police said it took only 10 minutes to fly across the English Channel into the county, which has about 120 public and private airfields. " well i never
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I am sure that Plod or the BBC meant 'country'! ;)
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Going back to the original question, the 1950s of course was a time when a lot of items in the UK were still subject to rationing and there were very onerous currency controls in place. There was also a 'black market' culture which had built up during the war, which was seen by some as not so much criminal, but a means of beating the bureacracy. Remember the film "Passport to Pimlico"? In the 1950s there were the best part of twenty active aerodromes along the South Coast, today there are only six (plus according to Kent Police and the BBC, obviously hundreds of farm strips!:rolleyes:). In the immediate post-war era there were certainly a much higher number of uncontrolled light aircraft movements than there are today It probably added up to a surprisingly large amount of low-level smuggling of small amounts of cigarettes and alcohol etc. However I am sure that little if any was linked to organised crime, or the much more serious issues of security, people-trafficking and drugs that concerns the Police today. Luckily I think that general aviation is pretty good at self-policing. Most people on airfields know one another and are very quick to pick up on something out of the ordinary..... as that BBC article highlights.

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Stangman: "Kent Police said it took only 10 minutes to fly across the English Channel into the county, which has about 120 public and private airfields. " Newforest: I am sure that Plod or the BBC meant 'country'!
I reckon they are spot on with COUNTY. The Police, Special Branch & HMRC know more than people think about the location of airstrips in their manor. Without counting private helipads, I know of about 60 airfields and private airstrips in Kent. There's 2 private helipads in my village alone!!