Skip to main content
The Weald's Favourite Airline

It came as a surprise. Walking onto the apron at Manston with the other passengers for EUjet’s flight to Dublin, we walked past the two Fokker 100 jets and on towards the squat-looking Airlinair ATR 42-500 turbo-prop aircraft that I had previously wondered about, tucked-away in the corner.


Photo of the ATR taken at Dublin - Not Manston.

Can I take a photo I asked our escort? “No” she replied, “Security”, and I nodded knowingly, EUjet having confiscated my blunt nail scissors half an hour before.

Where the BAA have now re-allowed blunt nail scissors to be carried on passenger flights, EUjet, which has it’s aircraft under an Irish registration, is still bound by Irish regulations, so no scissors or anything vaguely metallic or pointed that may pose a security risk to the aircraft or its crew.

I recently interviewed EUjet boss, Stuart McGoldrick for Airliner World and knowing a number of people, management and crew at the airline, I have been asking EUjet if it might be possible to fly the right seat of one of their Fokker 100’s for Pilot Magazine review of the aircraft, - and they’re looking into it but the ATR was an extra unexpected bonus, as I was thinking of approaching Air Atlantique for ride in theirs.

The Captain of this Airlinair ATR-42, was Francois Roubes and his First Officer is Claudio Dumay.

Francois, who was a helicopter pilot in the French navy has been a Captain on the ATR for five years, while Claudio, who was a flight engineer, has two years on type. Both are based at Orly, outside Paris.


ATR First Officer Claudio Dumay

With some heavy weather and a strong headwind over the Irish Sea, EUjet UNI04W back to London, was twenty-five minutes late and it was ten minutes before seven before we were all on board ready for the flight home. This time, and about a quarter of an hour into the flight, I was invited to meet Captain Chris Kalisvaart, a Dutchman with over six thousand hours on the Fokker 100, who has been flying them since 1993 when he worked in Indonesia. His First Officer is Lee Salway, enjoying his first job flying jets. Lee built-up his own flying experience dropping parachutists before being accepted as an airline pilot, finally finding his way to Manston and a right seat on the EUjet fleet, where he tells me he’s enjoying life immensely. This was the aircraft’s second trip to Dublin of the day.


Lee Salway

We arrived at Manston only two minutes late, thanks to a strong tailwind. As a both passenger and a pilot, I can’t fault the EUjet experience of the last two days. The aircraft that gave them so much trouble earlier on in the year, with the undercarriage emergency, has now gone and with it, the many delays and technical problems that went with it. Every new business has its problems and if you watch the Airline series on TV, you’ll know how challenging a business this can be. However, what really marks out the EUjet experience from a local perspective, is how committed the people are to making our local airline a success and how much they want to show our local and frequently cynical, community what a good service they can offer.

You can see a collection of EUjet aircraft and crew photos here.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Mainframe to Mobile

Not one of us has a clue what the world will look like in five years’ time, yet we are all preparing for that future – As  computing power has become embedded in everything from our cars and our telephones to our financial markets, technological complexity has eclipsed our ability to comprehend it’s bigger picture impact on the shape of tomorrow.

Our intuition has been formed by a set of experiences and ideas about how things worked during a time when changes were incremental and somewhat predictable. In March 1953. there were only 53 kilobytes of high-speed RAM on the entire planet.

Today, more than 80 per cent of the value of FTSE 500* firms is ‘now dark matter’: the intangible secret recipe of success; the physical stuff companies own and their wages bill accounts for less than 20 per cent: a reversal of the pattern that once prevailed in the 1970s. Very soon, Everything at scale in this world will be managed by algorithms and data and there’s a need for effective platforms for ma…
The Mandate of Heaven

eGov Monitor Version

“Parliament”, said my distinguished friend “has always leaked like a sieve”.

I’m researching the thorny issue of ‘Confidence in Public Sector Computing’ and we were discussing the dangers presented by the Internet. In his opinion, information security is an oxymoron, which has no place being discussed in a Parliament built upon the uninterrupted flow of information of every kind, from the politically sensitive to the most salacious and mundane.

With the threat of war hanging over us, I asked if MPs should be more aware of the risks that surround this new communications medium? More importantly, shouldn’t the same policies and precautions that any business might use to protect itself and its staff, be available to MPs?

What concerns me is that my well-respected friend mostly considers security in terms of guns, gates and guards. He now uses the Internet almost as much as he uses the telephone and the Fax machine and yet the growing collective t…

Civilisational Data Mining

It’s a new expression I haven’t heard before. ‘Civilisational data mining.’

Let me start by putting it in some context. Every character, you or I have typed into the Google search engine or Facebook over the last decade, means something, to someone or perhaps ‘something,’ if it’s an algorithm.


In May 2014, journalists revealed that the United States National Security Agency, the NSA, was recording and archiving every single cell-phone conversation that took place in the Bahamas. In the process they managed to transform a significant proportion of a society’s day to day interactions into unstructured data; valuable information which can of course be analysed, correlated and transformed for whatever purpose the intelligence agency deems fit.

And today, I read that a GOP-hired data company in the United States has ‘leaked’ personal information, preferences and voting intentions on… wait for it… 198 million US citizens.

Within another decade or so, the cost of sequencing the human genome …