Category:Silver City Airways

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Silver City Airways logo.
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Silver City Airways was a private, British independent airline formed in 1946. The name Silver City was derived from the eponymous Australian mining town at Broken Hill, where The Zinc Corporation was headquartered. Silver City's first commercial flight departed London Heathrow for Sydney via Johannesburg in late 1946. The following year, Silver City leased its first Bristol Freighter, moved its base to Blackbushe and participated in the airlift of Hindu and Muslim refugees between Pakistan and India. In 1948, control of Silver City passed from the Zinc Corporation to British Aviation Services. In July of that year, the airline inaugurated the world's first air ferry service across the English Channel between Lympne Airport and Le Touquet Airport. In 1948–49, Silver City participated in the Berlin Airlift. In 1949, it established a French sister airline.

In 1953, Silver City took delivery of its first Bristol Superfreighter. The following year, the company moved to a new permanent home at Lydd Ferryfield, Britain's first newly constructed post-war airport. The same year, Silver City Airways came under the control of the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O). By the mid-1950s, Silver City had become the biggest air cargo carrier in the United Kingdom while annual passenger numbers at its "Ferryfield" base had reached ¼ of a million. During that time, the airline also inaugurated air ferry services between Scotland and Ireland and from/to the Midlands. This period also saw the launch of Silver Arrow, a London—Paris coach-air-coach/rail service, with the cross-Channel air portion operating between Lydd and Le Touquet. In 1957, Silver City accomplished its one-millionth Channel crossing. In summer 1958, Silver City's "Ferryfield" base recorded more aircraft movements than any other UK airport. That year, also marked the conclusion of Silver City's first decade of air ferry operations during which the airline operated more than 100,000 flights carrying over 200,000 vehicles and ¾ of a million passengers, with peak-day frequency exceeding 200. In 1959, Silver City took over sister airline Britavia's Handley Page Hermes fleet and Manston base. That year, the airline also began oil industry support flights in Libya.

By 1960, Silver City's 40,000 annual cross-Channel flights transported 220,000 passengers and 90,000 vehicles while network-wide freight haulage reached 135,000 tons a year. The following summer, the airline reached agreement with a French rival to co-finance construction of a branch line linking Le Touquet Airport with the nearby main railway line to reduce surface travelling time from/to Paris. Unsustainable losses as a result of the loss of the Libyan oil industry support flight contract, increasing competition from roll-on/roll-off ferries and the lack of suitable replacements for the ageing Bristol Freighters resulted in growing financial difficulties, culminating in Silver City's takeover by British United Airways (BUA) holding company Air Holdings in 1962


This page contains all films, TV series, and video games that feature aircraft of Silver City Airways.

See also