LUNDY: Private airfield and regional airport
Note: The two maps were kindly provided by Mr Michael T Holder.
The aerial picture was obtained from Google Earth ©
Operated by: 1934: R T Boyd & T W J Nash
1935: Atlantic Air Services
1990/2000: Lundy Company
These two pictures, from postcards, were kindly sent by Mike Charlton who has an amazing collection. See: www.aviationpostcard.co.uk
British airline users: Pre 1940: Atlantic Coast Air Services, R T Boyd & T W J Nash
(It must be borne in mind that the difference between airline and charter operators during this period is marginal at best)
Post 1945: Devonair
Charter services: Pre 1939: Atlantic Coast Air Services, Barnstaple & North Devon Air Services
Post 1950 to 1956: Devonair, Devon Air Travel, North Devon Flying Club, Wrafton Flying Club
Location: In the Bristol Channel, 11nm NW of Hartland Point in Devon
Period of operation: 1934 to 1940. Then from roughly 1950 to present day
Runway: In 1934 the Air Ministry licensed an area between the Lighthouse Wall and the Quarter Wall to be used by Boyd and Nash’s DH Dragon G-ACCR based at BARNSTAPLE – NORTH DEVON AERODROME, situated more or less where RAF CHIVENOR is located. After striking a wall on the third landing attempt with G-ACCR on the 3rd June 1934 it was shipped back by sea, and it did fly again! This incident was without much doubt the reason why the Monospar ST.4 G-ACCP was then acquired. Following this accident the Air Ministry ordered lengthening the NW/SE runway.
2001: 06/24 400x28 grass
(Another official report says the strip is roughly 50 metres wide). It also states that runway 24 is orientated 230º magnetic so in late 2004 the runway orientation was now 05/23.
NOTES: Probably the best history of flying regarding LUNDY was published in the June 2007 issue of Popular Flying by the author and my good friend Maurice J Wickstead. In it he says the arrival of the Short Scion G-ACUW heralded an era of scheduled services which began from April 1935, operating daily at fares costing 15 shillings. In the 1930s LUNDY was also visited by DH.60 Moths, DH.83 Fox Moths, DH.84 Dragons, DH.87B Hornet Moths and GAL Monospars, mostly operating commercial services but also private flights.
After a second Short Scion was aquired, (G-AETT), in April 1937, the company re-registered itself as Lundy and Atlantic Coast Airlines adding routes to CARDIFF, (PENGHAM MOOR?), Plymouth, (ROBOROUGH?) and Jersey, presumably landing on the beach at St AUBIN?
THE SECOND WORLD WAR
During WW2 LUNDY had a few exceptional stories to tell regarding aviation. A Heinkel 1-11, (IG+AL, 1KG27), based at Tours in northern France crash landed on LUNDY 3rd March 1941, the crew being captured. It is reported another Heinkel 1-11 crashed on LUNDY during April 1942 presumably with fatal results? In early 1942 it seems a RAF Whitley bomber crashed killing all five crew at Pilots Quay.
During the 1950s Devonair operated a service from CHIVENOR using the Auster 5 G-AJXC. Did they use only this aircraft?
A flight guide published in 2000 warns that PPR is essential as farm stock may be in the area, and a fence has to be removed! On the other hand LUNDY ISLAND was listed as an airfield in the 1939 airfield guide published by Reading Aero Club. But was it the same site? It appears it probably was.
My very good friend, the late Aussie Brown, recalls talking to the pilot of a Short Skyvan charged with delivering a bull to Lundy. His main problem was in deciding which end of the animal would best be placed facing the cockpit!
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