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G-AMSV Returns to Coventry

An old friend returned to Coventry yesterday when G-AMSV, in her striking Indian Air force livery, landed here for extensive maintenance by our engineers. Sierra Victor was part of the Air Altantique fleet here for many years. She'll...

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Baginton Air Pageant

The initial details for the Baginton Air Pageant are up on the website! As we don't have the space for a full-on air show attracting 20,000 or so people, we're aiming for low-key, themed days like this. A couple of thousand people,...

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Newquay Pleasure flights

We promised we'd be back to fly in Cornwall, and here we are. We'll be heading south with a Rapide and Chipmunk to spend a week at Newquay from 25th July, with a further visit planned in August. The flights are bookable in the normal...

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New Dakota Book

Geoff Jones just told me that his new book on the DC-3, released to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Dak's appearance, is now available. The cover sports a lovely shot of G-ANAF, shot by Simon Westwood before her radome goiter was...

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Nimrod Engine Run

We've just confirmed plans by NPT to run all four of the Nimrod's Rolls-Royce Speys on Saturday 9th May. We expect the thunder to start just after lunchtime. Come along and enjoy some audio power - and please dip into your pockets...

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Miles Gemini

Originally built with c/n 6469 in 1947 and delivered that year to Air Schools of Wolverhampton, G-AKDK then passed to Mitchell Engineering, Peterborough in 1950.  In 1954 she was sold to Walter Purkis Bowles, one of the original ‘Throttle Benders’ and based at Elstree. The following year she passed to Ernest Crabtree and William Wilson & Sons, Guiseley.  ‘Ernie’ raced her with great enthusiasm and considerable success.

 In 1957 ownership passed to Robert Turner, based at Croydon, who took her across the Channel to attend the International Air Rally at Kobenhaven, Denmark before selling her in 1960 to Guy Wilfred Harben, Bucks, who based her at White Waltham. Mr Harben had destroyed his previous Gemini by landing on a hangar roof!  His fondness of the type is demonstrated by the fact that he replaced her with another.

Her Certificate of Airworthiness expired in March 1970, at which time she required a major inspection which would have involved separating the wing and fuselage. She was grounded for the foreseeable future.

In 1971, with his health failing, Mr Harben sold the aircraft to Jens Toft  of the Veteranmuseum, Stauning, Egeskov, on the island of Funen. She was delivered by air to the Royal Danish Aero Club base on the island.  Here she appears to have been flown, possibly not entirely legally, by Jens and Hans Kofoed and a local Count.

Keeping an old aircraft in an airworthy state is hugely time consuming and very expensive.  The Gemini's condition deteriorated and she was ultimately dismantled and stored in the Ministry of Cultural Affairs' facility at Billund.  In 2007 the Ministry said it was no longer prepared to pay for the storage and unless another museum wanted to pay to transport her away she would be scrapped.

Miles Historian and author Peter Amos of the Miles Aircraft Collection worked constantly to prevent the loss of this historic aircraft, and in 2010 Peter Turner very generously offered to pay to transport her back to the UK.  In april 2011 she made the journey from Rotterdam to Felixstowe in a 40 ft container, for storage at Baxterely airfield near Nuneaton, where she remained until her purchase by TCAT in 2013.