25 May 2024
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Viscount Survivors

59 of the 444 Viscounts built survive as complete airframes or major components. Some are in very good condition and are looked after by museums while others are just wrecks. They can be found in 24 countries.

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Established 2005
Vickers Viscount Network
A Virtual Museum dedicated to the Vickers-Armstrongs VC2 Viscount

Viscount c/n 416

Operational Record

Photo of Viscount c/n 416

Australia flag Australia

This V.832 series Viscount was built for

It first flew on Wednesday, 8 April 1959 at Hurn, Bournemouth, Hampshire, England powered by Rolls-Royce Dart 525 engines.

Photo of Viscount c/n 416

Australia flag Australia

Its final owner/operator was

Its fate:-
Crashed at Nadjayamba Station, 12 miles west of Winton Township, Queensland, Australia 22 September 1966 after an onboard fire and port wing section separation.

All 4 four crew and 20 passengers died in the accident. A memorial cairn was unveiled at the crash site 24 September 1967.

Operational record
Photo of ANSETT-ANA Viscount VH-RMI

Country of Registration Australia

April 1959 to September 1966


VH-RMI - c/n 416 - a V.832 series Viscount
Australia registered

23 July 1958
An order for four Type 832 aircraft was placed by ANSETT-ANA. ANA stands for Australian National Airways.

ANA stands for Australian National Airways.

8 April 1959
First flight from Hurn Airport, Bournemouth, Hampshire, England.

19 April 1959
Noted at Gatwick Airport, Surrey, England carrying out a single ILS approach and overshoot.

22 April 1959
Noted at Gatwick Airport, Surrey, England carrying out a single ILS approach and overshoot.

23 April 1959
Registered to ANSETT-ANA.

It was fitted with integral front 'airsteps' and had a rear lounge which was not occupied during the takeoff or landing phases.

24 April 1959
Handed over to ANSETT-ANA at Wisley Airfield, Surrey, England.

It then departed to Blackbushe Airport, Hampshire, England.

25 April 1959
Departed from Blackbushe Airport, Hampshire, England on delivery to Australia via Rome, Italy - Beirut, Lebanon - Bahrain, Persian Gulf - Karachi, Pakistan - Delhi, India - Calcutta, India - Bangkok, Thailand - Saigon, Vietnam - Zamboanga, Philippines - Biak, Indonesia - Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia and Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Australia.

The flight crew consisted of Captain Jack McCallister, Captain D H Johnstone and Captain C E Wright, Navigator C Mushe and Engineer D Colquhoun.

29 April 1959
Arrived at Essendon Airport, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

Originally configured with 52 seats, this was later changed to 63 seats. At this time the rear lounge was removed.

May 1959
Entered service with ANSETT-ANA.

David Carter illustration of ANSETT-ANA Viscount VH-RMI

Viscount illustrations by David Carter

Originally configured with 52 seats, this was later changed to 63 seats. At this time the rear lounge area was removed.

7 May 1960
Total time 2,842:52 hours.

circa 1963
V832 De Luxe ANSETT-ANA titles painted on the tail.

22 September 1966
Crashed in the bush at Nadjayamba Station, 12 miles west of Winton Township, Queensland, Australia at 13:03 local time.

Flight 149 departed Mount Isa Airport, Queensland at 12:08 local time for the 73 minute flight to Longreach Airport, Queensland, while enroute to Eagle Farm Airport, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. At 12:52 an emergency descent from 17,500 feet was initiated due to a fire warning in the No.1 and No.2 port engine nacelles. The crew were trying to divert to Winton Township Airfield, Queensland because of the visible fire to the rear of the No.2 engine nacelle. Control of the aircraft was lost when the port wing failed between the No.1 and No.2 engine nacelles and it crashed in a near vertical attitude in the bush at Nadjayamba Station, 12 miles west of Winton Township and about 13.5 miles short of the airfield.

Sadly, none of the 4 crew and 20 passengers on board survived.

Flight crew: - Captain John Kenneth Cooper (41), First Officer John F Gillam (29), Senior Hostess Beverly A Heeschen (24) and Hostess Narell E Davis (19).

Beverly had replaced another Hostess who had called in sick.

Elizabeth Cooke from Arnhem Land, Northern Territories was waiting at Darwin Airport to board a connecting service to Brisbane where she would transfer to another service to Sydney. As a sixteen year old returning to boarding school she had an escort with her to get her on board. Her escort was asked if Elizabeth would give up her seat for someone who was attending a wedding in Brisbane. This was agreed and Elizabeth later took a different route to Sydney via Adelaide.

Communications in those days was poor with a lot of remote areas only having a radio service. Elizabeth's parents heard about the crash and naturally assumed that their daughter was amongst the casualties. It was not until the next day that they found out that she had taken a different route and was safe.

Senior Hostess Beverley A Heeschen
Senior Hostess Beverley A Heeschen

The passengers were: - Mr Phillip E Anderson (33), Mr H S Bagot (43), Mr G L Bardley (44), Miss R B Boyle (21), Mr W J Caples (57), Mr R F Cashell (41), Mr P A Doyle (52) Mr J Fernandez (29), Mrs E E Fisher (62), Mr R E Friend (46), Master J P Gamin (3), Master T G Gamin (4), Mr C J Gregson (44), Mr T J Henty (24), Mr G J Jull (22), Mr N M Killingley (36), Mr C F Lott (30), Mr A McDonald (40), Mr S L McKenzie (57), Mr A Munro (54).

Accident investigation was very difficult due to the severe fragmentation of the airframe but it was established that there was a failure of the No.2 Cabin Blower oil metering unit which became detached, possibly due to a rotor breakup and subsequent imbalance, although this was never fully established due to the post crash condition.

This led to a severe fire which spread to the port wing resulting in the failure of the main spar upper boom and finally, separation of the outer wing section including the No.1 engine nacelle.

Total time 18,644 hours and 12,858 total landings.

18 January 1967
ANSETT-ANA dry leased (i.e. without crew) Viscount VH-TVF (C/N 49) from Trans-Australia Airlines (TAA) to cover this loss.

24 September 1967

A memorial cairn was unveiled at Nadjayamba Station which is on private property and is not always possible for visitors to get access.

Memorial Cairn at Nadjayamba Station.
Memorial Cairn at Nadjayamba Station

22 September 1967

A second memorial was unveiled on the main street of Winton Township which has ceramic photos of the site and of the original memorial cairn.

Memorial Stone in Winton.
Memorial Stone in Winton

September 2006
To mark the 40th Anniversary of the disaster, around a hundred people gathered at Nadjayamba station for a memorial service. Several of the family and friends of the crew and passengers travelled from all around Australia to attend, and for some it was the first time they had visited the site.

Photo of BEA - British European Airways Viscount G-AOJC

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This website has been designed, built and is maintained by Geoff Blampied, Norwich, Norfolk, England.