c/n 1455
XP806 at Middle Wallop.
Photo: UInknown photographer © c.1962 - Robin A. Walker Collection
XP806 on display at Baginton - Coventry shortly after delivery.

Note absence of door foot steps!

Photo: Neil Aird © 15 July 1961

c/n 1455




• de Havilland Aircraft, Hatfield. Delivered 18-Jan-1961 to Hawarden, Chester via Liverpool Docks. First flight, 06-May-1961.

XP806 Delivered to Army Air Corps at AAC Centre Middle Wallop, Hampshire 15-May-1961.

Taken on charge by 6 Flight at Middle Wallop, Hampshire, 18-May-1961.

Accident: Middle Wallop. 13-Nov-1962. Category 3. Collision on landing. Port undercarriage seen broken off.

To Ministry of Aviation 09-Sep-1963.

To de Havilland Aircraft, (Location unknown) from 18-Oct-1963.

To 19MU St Athan, South Glamorga, Wales,  22-Jan-1964

To Detmold, Germany 01-Jan-1965 but returned to 9 MU St Athan, South Glamorgan on 02-Jun-1965

Taken on charge by 131 Flight, Royal Corp of Transport (RCT) Wildenwrath, Germany on 09-Aug-1965.

Flown to Aden to replace XP777 which had crashed 08-Dec-1965. It was flown to Akrotiri, Cyprus via Nice, Rome and Brindisi arriving on 23-Apr-1966. The crew included Maj J.N.W. Moss and Capt Morgan. It was then flown from Akrotiri to Aden commencing 24-Apr-1966 through Amman, Jordan and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, a distance of 1617nm and taking 17 flying hours, arriving at Falaise, Aden on 28-Apr-1966. The crew consisted of Capt JA Newby RCT and Lt. R F Grevatte-Ball, RCT.

Taken on charge by 15 Flight, 3 Wing at Falaise, Aden on 28-Apr-1966 until 13-Jun-1967.

Aircraft hit by small arms fire over Sheikh Othman The pilot was Sgt I L Cornall of the REME.

15 Flight moved to RAF Khormaksar by-07-Sep-1967 until 04-Oct-1967 to start the hand over to the South Arabian Air Force who were awaiting the delivery of their own Beavers.

The aircraft stayed in the Middle East and was taken on by 13 Flight when 15 flight returned to the UK. The aircraft, together with XP 774 and XP777 moved with 13 Flight to Sharjah in Oct-1967. It is understood two of the aircraft flew to the new location and the third was transported by Hercules. The flight joined with RAC/RA Air Troop Middle East and an infantry air platoon to form 13 Squadron on 01-Oct-1968.

The unit was re titled 668 Aviation Squadron on 01-Dec-1969 and was disbanded in Nov-1970.

Accident: Sharjah, Oman. 16-Sep-1970 .Crashed during take-off from Sharjah, Oman after the tail hit bushes and suffered Category 4 or 5 damage when starboard elevator was torn off. It was returned to the UK by HS Andover XS642 and it languished at 70 Aircraft Workshops, REME, Middle Wallop, during 1970 & 1971 and then Hawker Siddeley Aircraft (HAS) at Hawarden, Chester for rebuild. This was abandoned and the aircraft was struck off charge on 04-Mar-1971.  Parts were used with XP815 (crashed 09-Sep-1962) in making a virtually complete composite airframe, and later marked as XP822 with that aircrafts c/n plate.

To Princess Marina College Arborfield as an instructional airframe and later to Middle Wallop, Hampshire as a gate guard

Note: Seen in a dismantled state in open (in a hedge) at Cumbernauld Airfield for several years; seen by ISM 1995.

Note: Also stated that after Cumbernauld went to Tom Lund of Guam with Atlantic Aircraft Salvage being the brokers. To be checked.

N450LA Loren L. Olsen, Cordova, AK. Regd 31-May-2007.

For rebuild


The Beavers withdrawal from Aden, 13 October, 1967.

(Regrettably the authors name has been mislaid).

The Aden campaign was in its closing stages; all British troops had been withdrawn from the interior to the supposedly secure base surrounding the town of Aden and its port. The Army Air Corps element was rapidly dwindling, 8 Flight with their Scout helicopters had returned to England, leaving the remaining Scouts of 13 Flight to prepare for a move to Sharjah in the Arabian Gulf. No. 15 Flight were endeavouring to coax four of their Beaver aircraft into Belfast transports of the RAF for the move back to the UK whilst the final three were the only remaining aircraft, together with Beverleys of the RAF, to continue flying up country, in support of the rapidly mutinying South Arabian Army. Each trip was full of doubt, which side would the Arab troops stationed in the particular part to be visited be on; the Adenese Government, the National Liberation Front, or the Front for the Liberation of Occupied South Yemen.

At last the day arrived when the Beavers were finally to leave Aden. Loyalties had been exchanged from 15 Flight with their ‘witch on a broomstick’ to 13 Flight and their ‘black cats’. Of 13 Flight’s six Scouts only one was able to fly a farewell salute, and this aircraft was cleared for only the flights on to and off HMS Fearless, having a suspect main rotor gearbox. The three Beavers, all fully serviceable, were fitted with long range ferry tanks, the last aircraft completed its final up country detail on the evening before departure, and with a somewhat bloated take off, full of ‘free’ gifts from the RAF quarters at Khormaksar—were away, to Sharjah.

The trip was planned to take three days, following the Arabian Peninsular coast line via the RAF staging airfields of Salalah, Masirah and the Sultan of Muscat and Oman’s airfield at Bait. Climbing to 8,000 feet, Salalah was six and a half hours flying away, with a ferry tank range of nine hours, and all went well till about four hours out, one of the aircraft, flown by Lt Nigel Ironside, AAC, developed a total propeller oil seal failure. The results of this are always alarm­ing, little engine control is left and the wind­screen gets coated with oil; so too did the pilot on this occasion, as his side window was open! It was impossible to fly to Salalah, or return to Aden, so a precautionary landing was made at the only known airstrip in the area, Riyan. This had once belonged to the RAF, but was now known to be in the hand of local Arab Forces.

The third Beaver, flown by Sgt J. Cant, REME, remained circling overhead whilst the other two aircraft landed, to be greeted by a motley selection of Arabs dressed in assorted uniforms with red stars on peaked baseball caps, and Russian-style Chinese manufactured automatic weapons. Not being locked up straight away, it was decided to change the propeller seal and endeavour to bluff our way through. Sgt Cant’s aircraft therefore touched down well out of harms way at the edge of the airfield to land our chief mechanic, Sgt Jupp, REME. Quickly airborne he left Staff some considerable distance to walk to our location, and when finally a very hot mechanic arrived, this last aircraft was well on its way to Aden for assistance.

Whilst working on the engine we were guarded by a group of Arabs, although this did not stop another group from shooting in our direction on two occasions! We were interested to see a hi-jacked Air Djibouti DC.3 parked on the pan, which the only English-speaking Arab said was being used for gun running. This aircraft had been captured whilst on a routine charter flight from French Somaliland; and when after a successful ground run our English-speaking Arab asked us to remain till ‘someone comes from the local town to speak with you’, we had visions of our being in the gun running business also!

By now, if not allowed to depart soon, we would not be able to make Salalah before nightfall, and the position seemed to be stalemate. However, a check call on the UHF radio produced the, oh, so welcome voice of an RAF Hunter pilot, “overhead at 35,000 feet and don’t want to come down as it will use up my fuel and anyway might precipitate some adverse action.” Alas this incident not specifically mentioned in the RAF Operational Records - but it was very close to everyone’s departure from Aden.

However, the Arabs had seen us talking by radio—obviously we had help at hand, and this seemed to do the trick. A complete reversal of attitude ensued, “we are your friends,” they said, “you can go.” Without so much as an engine check, not even a doing up of straps, we were off, showering them in as much sand as possible, and we reached RAF Salalah just after dark.

Our troubles were not yet over, however, is a somewhat belated after flight inspection the next morning on the two aircraft revealed that the one flown by Nigel Ironside had in fact been hit, we presumed whilst on the ground at Riyan. A bullet had gone through the port tail plane and elevator torque tube and the aircraft was judged to be unsafe for further flying, so a week’s wait in the very pleasant atmosphere of Salalah was required whilst spares were flown out by the RAF. Even so the two Beavers still made RAF Sharjah, our new home, before the helicopters in HMS Fearless. We flew over the ship whilst it was at anchor off the Muscat coast, with no sign of life on board, everybody recovering below from the party of the night before!

And the third Beaver, we had hoped would have been able to fly once again from Aden to re-join us at Salalah, but the Staff thought otherwise. It was de-winged and flown up to Sharjah in the belly of a Hercules, and so put off by this flight that it was eight weeks before it would fly again with the various faults that it acquired.

And the final note, we were accused by the Staff in Aden of jeopardizing the Anglo-South Arabian talks, then going on in Switzerland, by trying to start a war at Riyan.