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1970's London Heathrow Part 1 - The All Jet Album

G-ARPM Hawker Siddeley DH121/HS121 Trident 1
of British European Airways (BEA)

G-ARPM Hawker Siddeley DH121/HS121 Trident 1 of  British European Airways (BEA) - London Heathrow Airport

Photographic Copyright Caz Caswell © 1970-2009

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A great looking Aircraft. The Trident 1 was specified to meet the requirements set by British European Airways. This meant that the original de Havilland design had to be scaled down both in passenger capacity and even more dramatically reducing range to less that half of that the designers envisaged. Because of the reduction is size, the redesign was now based on the use of Rolls Royce Spey Engines.

It did not take BEA long to realise their error in requiring such a short range and small passenger load. The first stretch was the Trident 2E (see next Photograph) , slightly larger than the original design and with a similar, but slightly less range. To achieve the new weights required that the most powerful of the Spey Engine Series were used. Even with these engines, at full load when operating from Hot and High Airfields the limitations of the Spey began to show.

But once again BEA had badly misjudged what it needed, whilst Hawker Siddeley with greater clarity saw the need for a larger aircraft and even before the Trident 2E had flown were proposing a totally new design. Instead BEA decided to buy American, until this was vetoed by the British government (the owners of BEA).

BEA having been told to buy British, instead of going with the Hawker Siddeley plan, demanded another stretch of the Trident. This meant continuing with the Spey Engines and therefore the designers were forced into a three and half engine specification. Three Rolls Royce Spey 512 and a tiny RB162 as an additional take-off thrust engine in the tail.

Whenever BEA, or BOAC had undue influence in the design of a British Civil Aircraft, the results were often good looking Aircraft with great passenger appeal, but commercially a failure.

British European Airways - Wikipedia Entry

Hawker Siddeley Trident - The Wikipedia Entry

Trident Preservation Society

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