Aviation Historian 40
R.Lezon - From West London to South America
The Cygnet remains in one piece, mounted on a pair of concrete stanchions at the Aeroclub Colon, northwest of the capital. The registration LV-FAH was cancelled in November 1996. One other Cygnet II went to South America, G-AGAW (c/n 112) becoming PP-TDY in Brazil in March 1941, the registration being cancelled in 1950.
Put on to the British register in September 1940 as G-AGAS, Cygnet II c/n 117 was used for publicity photos - this one emphasising the type’s viceless characteristics by showing that even a lady could fly it (!) - before being dismantled and crated for transport by ship to Buenos Aires in Argentina, where it was registered LV-KGA.
A poor-quality but extremely rare photograph of LV-KGA after its arrival in Argentina, possibly at one of the Tierra del Fuego airfields from which it operated during the war. It was used by members of the Fellowship of the Bellows, a wartime fundraising organisation in Latin America which helped purchase aircraft for the RAF.
Crunch! The Cygnet was extensively damaged during a landing accident, presumably at one of its Tierra del Fuego airfields, in March 1943. Given the difficulty of acquiring spare parts during the war it was then put into storage until 1947, when it was restored to airworthy status and re-registered as LV-FAH, as which it flew until 1963.
The original CW Aircaft Ltd Cygnet I, G-AEMA (c/n 0001), was markedly different from the later General Aircraft Ltd production examples, the sole Cygnet I prototype having a conventional tailwheel undercarriage and single fin and rudder. It also incorporated a split trailing-edge flap running under the fuselage, as seen deployed here during landing.