ONE of Aurigny’s iconic and now-retired Trislanders made one last journey, as it headed to its new home at one of the UK’s leading aviation museums.
The aircraft G-RLON, which retired from service at the end of February, headed over to the Solent Sky Museum in Southampton, where it is due to be placed on permanent public display. It is one of three Trislanders due to be put on public display, with plans for the iconic “Joey” to take pride of place at Guernsey’s Oatlands Village, and the airline’s last Trislander G-BEVT to be displayed at IWM Duxford, one of the UK’s leading aviation museums.
G-RLON was manufactured and registered in 1975 and arrived with Aurigny in 1991. It has clocked up more than 32,600 flying hours over its lifetime – equivalent to flying non-stop for 1,358 days. It is understood to be one of the longest serving commercial aircraft in the world. The total number of landings it has made stands at 105,130.
Aurigny CEO Mark Darby said: “We are delighted to see G-RLON going on display at Solent Sky Museum, where the public will be able to view the aircraft and learn more about its history and association with Aurigny.
“The Trislanders have served the airline for over four decades now and for many years was the backbone of the operations. Many people, both locally and further afield, hold the aircraft close to their hearts and it is fitting that one of our last Trislanders will go on public display in the UK, for people far and wide to see.”
The Trislander fleet is being retired as part of Aurigny’s planned and phased transition from the Trislander to Dornier aircraft.
G-RLON was flown to Lee-on-Solent Airfield, where it will be stored for a while, until space can be made in the museum.
The museum’s director Alan Jones said the opportunity would then be taken to tell, in full, the story of the Britten-Norman aircraft company and Aurigny.
“The Trustees of Solent Sky Museum are delighted to receive the gift of the last but one Trislander in service with Aurigny.
“The Britten-Norman story is very much a local one. The aircraft was built on the Isle of Wight and served as part of the fleet of Trislanders that for 40 years plied their route from Southampton to Alderney, a familiar site and with its distinctive engine sound became almost a part of the life of the city.
“Solent Sky Museum have for over 30 years told the story of the Britten-Norman Aircraft Company, a company who produced the most successful post war passenger aircraft the Islander. The museum has had on display for many years the BN1 Aircraft which was the first aircraft built by the Britten Norman Company on the Isle of Wight.”
Solent Sky Museum showcases a wide-range of iconic aircraft, through the ages, with a focus on the international importance of aviation history in the Southampton and Solent area.
Facts about G-RLON
The aircraft has completed more flights than any other Aurigny Trislander. RLON stands for Royal London Insurance. The eye-catching pink colour scheme it used to wear advertised their brand.
Type: Britten-Norman Mk3 Trislander
Year of Manufacture: 1975
Entered service with Aurigny: February 1975
Total flying hours of the aircraft: 32,604.45
Total Landings: 105,130