Heathrow feature

We’ve been delving through our archives and uncovered some great old photographs, which we thought you might like to see.

We’ve also posted these on Pinterest, and hope you may be able to provide us with some more information or even stories about what has been captured in these historical shots.


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Steve Balfour

Nicky, the photograph captioned ‘Manchester 1968’ was definitely not taken at EGCC. It was either taken at LATCC West Drayton, or the CATC/EU at Hurn.
Great pictures and I hope you post some more.

Thanks Steve I have added your comments to the picture on Pinterest as that is where we are hoping people will visit and comment so we can collect anecdotes and facts.



Keith. Peers

Hi. Great. Read.



Martin Howard

Interesting, thank you. It would be nice to see also some pictures of the airfield in 1952. I visited Heathrow with a local boys group from Dartford on 19 July 1952 and recall seeing the Comet, which had on 2 May 1952 completed the first jet passenger flight to Johannesburg. Heathrow must have been quite small then, unlike when I last left Heathrow in 2012.

Thanks for sharing your recollections Martin. Yes Heathrow has certainly grown since 1952. If I find any pictures of the airfield dating that far back I will certainly add them for you. In the meantime, you may want to read another of our blogs which takes you behind the scenes at Heathrow’s new Terminal 2 https://nats.aero/blog/2013/09/a-sneak-peek-at-heathrow-terminal-2/



Jean Knowles

My Dad used to work for BOAC in the 50s – we used to go and collect him from the front of some of those semi-circle corregated huts on the Bath Road where it passes by Sipson. This was before the central buildings and tunnel were erected. Also, previously, my Mum was Sir D’Albiac’s secretary, and she was in Miss London Airport and came 3rd in about 1947 – do you know where might I get some photos, please?




Steve is quite right about Manchester 1968, its at the old Air Traffic Control Evaluation Unit at Hurn. I note your correspondents seeking early Heathrow photos. If they have a look at https://atchistory.wordpress.com/ and search on EGLL they will find many early Heathrow photos and articles. I’ll try to add details on many of the others here.

John Levesley ex NATS Controller 1969-2002 and atchistory administrator




1962 shows the pseudo pilot positions on an old analogue ATC simulator, possibly by Solartron. This may be at the then School of ATC at Hurn.




1965 believed to be at the ATCEU, a simulation of Preston ATCC sectors 1, 2 and 3 and Hack Green. Feed sectors include Manchester Zone, Manchester Approach and Liverpool Approach and Antrobus.




Manchester is probably at ATCEU again, part of the same simulation at as “Manchester 1965”


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