Aerocar, Christopher Balfour


 A Portsmouth venture, embraced by an Indian Maharajah - new book design


  - A Portsmouth venture, embraced by an Indian Maharajah

Christopher Balfour

Available now directly from the publishers Tricorn Books price £15 plus P&P - click to go to Amazon also at the Aviation Bookstore Tunbridge Wells

In his monumental book, British Private Aircraft, 1946–1970, Arthur Ord-Hume put a picture of the Aerocar on the cover of Volume 2. In the section describing this British venture he writes:
As peace loomed, the Directors of Portsmouth Aviation [my father, Lionel Balfour, and Francis Luxmoore] embarked on the design and construction of a really practical twin engine aeroplane. It performed perfectly. Everyone who flew it spoke glowingly of its handling and performance. The orders started rolling in but the company had no money to make that leap into aircraft production. Nobody wanted to help. An outstanding design was thus crippled by National political failure to provide any aid whatsoever to a small but established firm that happened to be onto a winner and holding a full order book. Had but a fraction of the aid given elsewhere been available to Luxmoore and Balfour, the Aerocar would have returned its investment by way of rich earnings. Abandoned projects like the V-1000, TSR 2, and others are well remembered. Whilst the Aerocar was at least as serious a loss to aviation, it is regrettably forgotten today.