No. 9937. Avro 619 Five (G-ABBY c/n 458)
Photograph from Military Aircraft Photographs (MAP)

Avro 619 Five

06/30/2010. In 1928 A.V. Roe and Co. Ltd. acquired a license to build the highly successful three-engined high-wing Fokker F.VIIB/3m transport for sale throughout the British Empire, excluding Canada. The British model was known as the Avro 618 Ten.

Powered by three 105 hp Armstrong Siddeley Genet Major five-cylinder radial engines, the Avro 619 Five was a scaled-down version for pilot and four passengers, and an entirely new design by Roy Chadwick. Like its larger forebearer, it was initially supplied to overseas order, two being delivered in 1929 to Wilson Airways Ltd. at Nairobi, Kenya, and a third to Australia.

The first of two Avro Fives to see service in the UK was the Avro demonstrator G-AASO (c/n 383), entered in the King's Cup Race on July 5, 1930 by Sir Philip Sassoon and flown by Flight Lieutenant S.L.G. Pope. It was not a spectacular racer, and conveniently retired at its home base, Woodford.

In September 1930 G-AASO was taken over by Wilson Airways Ltd. to replace their second machine VP-KAE 'Knight of the Grail', and although allotted the Kenya marks VP-KAH, these were never used. It flew as G-AASO on the African services until January 18, 1932, when it was damaged beyond repair in a forced landing 12 mls (19 km) from its destination while en route from Salisbury to Broken Hill.

The other British Avro Five was G-ABBY, built in 1930, and taken over by Air Service Training Ltd., Ramble, as a navigational trainer at the end of 1933. Apart from a forced landing at Nuneaton on May 4, 1934, it gave stalwart service until scrapped during the war.

Created June 30, 2010