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Program Information
 Bristol Broadband Co-operative 
 'Bristol Cars: A Very British Story' author on his family's Portsmouth Aviation & Aerocar
 Weekly Program
  Christopher Balfour, Gerry Gaston
 Bristol Broadband Co-operative  
 For non-profit use only.
 Attribution No Derivatives (by-nd) 
 No Advisories - program content screened and verified.
Christopher Balfour was born into one of Britain's pioneering aviation families running Portsmouth Aviation and scheduled air services along the South coast of England using pre-war Westland Wessex and Airspeed Couriers. Post-war their fleet of Dragon Rapides, Bristol Wayfarers and reconditioned Junkers were ready to take to the air again when Labour passed the Civil Aviation Act 1946 which made running a private airline punishable by up to two years in prison. Chris' father, Portsmouth Aviation boss, Lionel Balfour even offered to help start a nationalised airline but was rebuffed again and again byPrime Minister Clement Atlee's Aviation Secretary, William Wedgewood Benn. There was no way round him so they decided to design and build what they thought could be a world-beating aircraft, the 'Aerocar' for which they had scores of orders and, thwarted in Britain, planned to manufacture it in India before being again set back by Mountbatten and the advent of Indian Independence. Chris has written several books including his most recent on the 'Aerocar, A Portsmouth Invention, Embraced By The Maharajah' (2018), his life story, 'Learning From Difference' and also wrote the definitive book on 'Bristol Cars: A Very British Story' (2009) which now sells for a minimum of £800.00 second-hand online.

Gerry Gaston was an engineer in the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) but left early to fly civilian aircraft and help start a venture, Hercules Airlines, when rules were relaxed by the government. He spent many years flying livestock, vegetables and all kinds of freight around New Zealand, which is difficult to navigate by road, not to mention the Cook Strait between the North and South islands, in Bristol Freighters.
Gerry recently helped ship one of the last reamining Bristol freighters back to the UK to go on display at the newly opened 'Aerospace Bristol museum in Filton where these planes were made between 1945 and 1958. The main body of a huge Bristol-built aircraft which was left to fall into disrepair in New Zealand is finally home after completing its 11,000-mile journey. The fuselage of the Bristol Type 170 Freighter was carried on a low loader lorry with an escort from Bristol Port in Portbury to its birthplace at the Aerospace Bristol museum in Filton at about 2pm on Thursday, January 4. The aircraft arrived back in the UK on Thursday, December 28 after flying out to New Zealand in 1954 where it served in the air force until 1977.

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00:58:00 English
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Christopher Balfour, Gerry Gaston  00:58:00  128Kbps mp3
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