BOAC Bedford CA Crew Bus
This Bedford CA van was used in many guises by both BEA and BOAC and was donated to the museum by British Airways Clubs in August 2006.
The basic design was modified in airline service for use as a general purpose van, crew bus, ambulance, pick-up truck and baggage van. These vehicles were used to carry people and equipment. Some even featured telescopic passenger steps for off-pier aircraft access and ‘high top’ versions were used as Mobile Dispatching vehicles. Very few of any version survive today. Restored by the British Airways Classic Vehicle Association who found it impossible to find a van with airline connections (let alone a crew bus), it took the Club 12 months of searching to find MFB 724 on a farm in Lincolnshire. During restoration all non-standard accessories were removed to recreate the original ‘spartan’ feel of the interior. The 1,600 engine with three speed gearbox was rebuilt and converted to unleaded. The rear floor is wooden with side seats simply screwed into position. The van was resprayed in BA’s Aircraft paintshop with the resulting finish guaranteed even at 30,000 feet! It now represents a typical BOAC Engineering crew bus at Heathrow Airport in the 1960s.