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Awards and Loans

The Trust offers financial assistance to individuals or groups to carry through restoration or improvement projects to completion. The Trust also invites enquiries about sponsoring one or more Awards.


Michael Allen  is a 19 year old trainee aircraft engineer. He has been with ATSO Engineering at Sywell Aerodrome, Brackley for nearly three years and has become a key part of the team restoring the prototype Beagle Pup light aircraft, G-AVDF, which after being stored for more than 40 years, is hoped will fly in June 2017, on the 50th anniversary of the aircraft’s maiden flight.  Michael’s grandfather, Mick Allen, runs a long-established business at Turweston, painting and repainting aircraft, so it was perhaps natural that Michael took a keen interest in aircraft from an early age. Working with ATSO owners Alan Turney and Simon Owen, he has been learning the skills to repair and restore vintage and classic aircraft from fabric covered Tiger Moths and Piper Cubs to aluminium de Havilland Chipmunks and as well as working on the Beagle Pup prototype, he’s been assisting with servicing and maintenance of its military equivalent, the Scottish Aviation Bulldog.



The Beagle Pup was Britain’s last series production light aircraft, produced by the Beagle Aircraft Company (itself an amalgam of the earlier Miles and Auster marques) at Shoreham in Sussex. Designed to offer state-of-the-art competition to the burgeoning American industry, the first flight of the prototype took place on 8th April 1967. On the day, the test pilot, “Pee Wee” Judge commented, of the 100hp Rolls-Royce powered machine “We’ve got a winner here, it’s a splendid little aeroplane.”

Initially it appeared his foresight was true. There was an enthusiastic following for the Pup from private owners and flying schools. A bigger engined 150hp variant also entered production and work began on the Bulldog military trainer variant. G-AVDF was used in demonstrations in Britain and abroad and used widely in Beagle’s promotional material. Not only was she the star of the show but, as a true prototype, detailed records show an almost daily alteration to improve the aircraft.



Sadly, however, in 1968 the British government took over Beagle Aircraft Ltd. The takeover was short-lived and Beagle went into receivership in 1970 with many orders on the books that were never honoured. In all 177 Beagle Pups were built and Scottish Aviation Limited took over Bulldog production.

After flying her last trials for Beagle in 1969, G-AVDF remained at the back of the hangar, her duty done. When Beagle went into liquidation she remained at Shoreham for a while but was passed on to Duxford. Languishing again, incomplete, at the back of the hangar she eventually found her way back to Shoreham where the engineering students re-assembled her for a static display.

She next found her way to Brooklands where it was hoped she could be restored but again was left incomplete. The aircraft then passed into the hands of private owner David Collings and after another lengthy period of storage, restoration to flight began in 2015 at ATSO Engineering, with the aircraft’s future airworthiness being overseen by the Light Aircraft Association on behalf of the CAA, and Michael Allen playing a key role in bringing the aircraft up to scratch.


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The National Transport Trust makes loans to groups, associations and individuals at advantageous rates for the restoration of artefacts - whether mobile or part of the infrastructure.  Applications must be supported by a simple business plan which demonstrates the financial viability of the project. A sample business plan is available on request from the Treasurer.


The Trust does occasionaly make Awards for schemes which further the preservation movement. Again if you wish further information please contact the Treasurer.


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