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Thread: 747s at Kemble

  1. #1

    747s at Kemble

    Came back from Cirencester today the long way hoping to see all the airplanes at Kemble. As a plane freak I wasn’t disappointed. These are so close to the road you can almost touch the wingtips. Not sure how many planes are there but this was just a handful


  2. #2
    Master
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    that is close.


    arent some being retired?

  3. #3
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    I've driven past Kemble twice in the last 3 weeks and it's quite a sight right now. The last of the now decommissioned BA 747s arrived last week. Several friends and former colleagues left the RAF to fly 747s for BA and I assume (I must contact them) that they'll have been made redundant given the decimation in the airline industry.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by bwest76 View Post
    that is close.


    arent some being retired?
    There’s a few in the pics that have started to be stripped, engine pods missing panels etc

  5. #5
    Master unclealec's Avatar
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    It's a shock when you first drive down that stretch of road.

    Is the café at Kemble still open? That was/is always worth a slow coffee or two.

  6. #6
    Master Christian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skier View Post
    Several friends and former colleagues left the RAF to fly 747s for BA and I assume (I must contact them) that they'll have been made redundant given the decimation in the airline industry.
    They'll have plenty of time to chat with you...they are all sat at home on 60% pay and gardening leave for up to 2 years whilst they wait for a course on another aircraft. Some of the guys who are a couple of years from retirement anyway dont even intend to do that course and will quit when their ticket comes up. Only the last 250 poor sods into BA were sacked with nothing given to them apart from minimum notice period.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by unclealec View Post
    It's a shock when you first drive down that stretch of road.

    Is the café at Kemble still open? That was/is always worth a slow coffee or two.
    I think they are doing takeaways only.

  8. #8
    Master unclealec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DavidL View Post
    I think they are doing takeaways only.
    Cheers davidt. Bear this one in mind for when the madness ends folks - surprisingly busy airfield at times, with freight mainly.

  9. #9
    If anyone does go over, make sure to go and visit the Static Britannia there.

    My father and a load of other ex RAF OAPs volunteer to restore it, it costs nothing to hop on board ( other than a greatly appreciate small donation )


    * I am not sure what COVID related restrictions there might be at present *


    There is ( or certainly was ) a Canberra and a Hunter round that side of the Airfield as well

  10. #10
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    Was returning from Mumbai one time and rocked up at the airport to find we'd been given a 747 instead of the usual modern alternative.

    It was a bit tatty inside but it was noticably the smoothest flight I've ever been on , take off and landing were barely noticeable , business class was on the top deck and seemed quiet and roomy compared with the modern equivalents.

    One of the nicest flights I've had.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skier View Post
    I've driven past Kemble twice in the last 3 weeks and it's quite a sight right now. The last of the now decommissioned BA 747s arrived last week. Several friends and former colleagues left the RAF to fly 747s for BA and I assume (I must contact them) that they'll have been made redundant given the decimation in the airline industry.
    Decimation is the right word. I flew back into the UK on Saturday and until you personally see it for yourself you don't realise just how bad it is.

    We drove into the Spanish car park at the airport with perhaps just 5% of the spaces occupied. Walked into the airport which looked like a ghost town. There was only one flight (ours) between 6.00am - midday. The aircraft was possibly 75% full and this was only due to nearly every passenger being diverted from other flights to make up the seats.

    When we flew in to land, there were dozens upon dozens of aircraft laid up nearby when we arrived at Bristol airport, The airport itself was dead.

    We walked out into the car park where our car was waiting and shock number1 was that hardly anyone was wearing a mask.

    EasyJet and Ryanair have announced that as from next week, they will only be flying at 30% of their seasonal capacity. No industry can survive on that.

    Possibly, rightly or wrongly, the aircraft industry may have to be nationalised in order to keep it going. It's a bad situation all round.

  12. #12
    Grand Master PickleB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by keitht View Post
    If anyone does go over, make sure to go and visit the Static Britannia there.

    My father and a load of other ex RAF OAPs volunteer to restore it, it costs nothing to hop on board ( other than a greatly appreciate small donation )


    * I am not sure what COVID related restrictions there might be at present *


    There is ( or certainly was ) a Canberra and a Hunter round that side of the Airfield as well
    I don't know about a Canberra but there are:



    Edit The Canberras should be there somewhere according to this link. Seem like an interesting place to visit once Covid is under control.

    Update Found them...they're on G apron (Gmaps link) and that's where the Buccaneers will end up. On Facebook the airport says of The Buccaneer Aviation Group:

    ...I’ve been impressed by the professional and proactive approach by the TBAG members. It’s great to have them at Cotswold Airport and we can both now look forward to some great events next year. I wish Mike, David, Andrew and the rest of the team the best of luck in getting established in their new home.

    The aircraft will be airside, so access is limited to those with an airside pass or pilots. Inevitably, it is more restrictive at an active airport for them than Bruntingthorpe.

    For those keen to see them, could I please ask you give TBAG time to settle in first and we have lots of aircraft to move around them, once they are in place.
    Last edited by PickleB; 19th October 2020 at 13:11.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Mick P View Post
    Decimation is the right word. I flew back into the UK on Saturday and until you personally see it for yourself you don't realise just how bad it is.
    I can only echo this, I checked our #1 Intl airports in/out last week for between 14:00 and 16:00 on a weekday afternoon - out of 33 scheduled flights only 3 were running.

    I have a flight attendant friend with the national flag carrier for Taiwan, she has flown twice in the last six months. Being an island nation 99.9% of people in and out must fly so these numbers are shocking to say the least.

  14. #14
    Grand Master hogthrob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bwest76 View Post
    that is close.


    Aren't some being retired?
    British Airways have retired all of their 747s (31 of them). https://thepointsguy.co.uk/news/brit...s-retires-747/

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Franky Four Fingers View Post
    Came back from Cirencester today the long way hoping to see all the airplanes at Kemble. As a plane freak I wasn’t disappointed. These are so close to the road you can almost touch the wingtips. Not sure how many planes are there but this was just a handful




    From the air, yesterday.
    There are 15 747s there, my pilot tells me
    Last edited by The Doc; 23rd October 2020 at 12:38.

  16. #16
    Master
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    If this was RAF Kemble my father was station commander when the Red Arrows were based there. Saw many practice flights when visiting, and now have quite a few signed pictures from the team as was.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Mick P View Post
    Decimation is the right word. I flew back into the UK on Saturday and until you personally see it for yourself you don't realise just how bad it is.

    We drove into the Spanish car park at the airport with perhaps just 5% of the spaces occupied. Walked into the airport which looked like a ghost town. There was only one flight (ours) between 6.00am - midday. The aircraft was possibly 75% full and this was only due to nearly every passenger being diverted from other flights to make up the seats.

    When we flew in to land, there were dozens upon dozens of aircraft laid up nearby when we arrived at Bristol airport, The airport itself was dead.

    We walked out into the car park where our car was waiting and shock number1 was that hardly anyone was wearing a mask.

    EasyJet and Ryanair have announced that as from next week, they will only be flying at 30% of their seasonal capacity. No industry can survive on that.

    Possibly, rightly or wrongly, the aircraft industry may have to be nationalised in order to keep it going. It's a bad situation all round.
    My father is a captain for Air Caribbean based in Trinidad. The airline is nationalised and the government is paying huge amounts to keep everything going, they do a few flights a week. They did announce they are making the entire fleet redundancy a few weeks ago but then retracted that and will pay 60% pay for a few months and see what happens. The biggest issue is most airlines lease the planes and the payments are very high. I can not see how many airlines will survive.

  18. #18
    Journeyman
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    Late 90's since I was last at Kemble while with the RAF; cannot remember why I was there and always sad to see aircraft broken up for scrap. While helping out with an aircraft major at St. Athan I noticed a few VC10's in kit form on a pan; contractors breaking them suggested they had run out of hours.

  19. #19
    Grand Master PickleB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed875 View Post
    Late 90's since I was last at Kemble while with the RAF; cannot remember why I was there and always sad to see aircraft broken up for scrap. While helping out with an aircraft major at St. Athan I noticed a few VC10's in kit form on a pan; contractors breaking them suggested they had run out of hours.
    Pinned post on www.facebook.com/cotswoldairport:

    Contrary to some posts on social media that we are an aircraft scrapyard, that cannot be further from the truth.

    We are an active commercial airport that caters for General Aviation and Business Jets, which including our 6 based flying schools, visitors and business jets accounts for 99.7% of our 32,000 movements a year. One of our tenants is Air Salvage who recycle airliners, hence why we have many parked/ stored on various aprons airside (which means they are on live parking aprons, with other aircraft operating around them)...


    I'm not saying you're wrong, just that 'scrap' seems to be a touchy subject as far as they're concerned.

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