By John Hayes Fisher
Last updated 2011-02-17
The airliner, registration G-ALDN and called Horus, was one of 25 Hermes aircraft built by the Handley Page company for BOAC - Britain's intercontinental airline for their West African routes. The 4-engined plane carried a crew of five on the flight deck, and three in the cabin. Considered the height of luxury at the time, this aircraft was designed to carry 40 passengers, but on the flight in question, between London and Accra, in Ghana, there were only ten.
Piloting the aircraft was Captain Bob Langley, a war hero who had won the Distinguished Flying Cross. Langley had flown 36 missions with Bomber Command, and his log book shows that he started the war with the same crew that he finished it with. He had flown this route across the Sahara 18 times before.
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