Friday, November 10, 2006

John W.Allam OBE FRAes 1924 –

John Allam standing in front of the Victor Prototype
Victor B Mk2 in flight
Victor B Mk2 in flight
Conceived in 1965 the prototype, G-ATXH, first flew (as the HP137) from Radlett under the control of the chief test pilot, John Allam, on 18 August 1967.


John Allam was born in 1924 and was educated at Churcher’s College,Hampshire and Christ’s College in Cambridge. He joined the RAF Volunteer reserve in 1943,undertaking flying training at No6 FTS in Oklahoma,USA flying PT17 Stearman and AT6 Harvard aircraft.

He was commissioned into the RAFVR in 1944, becoming a QFI in 1945 at RAF Windrush. From 1945-1954 he served in various roles including Captain of VIP Dakota based in Pakistan before joining ETPS on No9 course and then No6 course at USN Test Pilot School.

In 1954 he joined Handley Page Limited as assistant Test Pilot on the Victor prototype and Victor B Mk1 development test programme. He made the maiden flight of the first production Victor B Mk1 in 1956. The same year he was appointed Deputy Chief Test Pilot with overall responsibility for the Victor B Mk1 and B Mk2 development test programme. On the 1st June 1957 he exceeded Mach 1 in a Victor BMk1,making it the first ever supersonic 4 jet aircraft!

He made the maiden flight of the Victor B Mk2 in 1959 and of the Herald 200 in 1961. In 1965 he was appointed Chief Test Pilot and assumed overall responsibility for the HP Jetstream development programme. He made the maiden flight of the aircraft on 18th August 1967.