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Guides to London and Irish Airports from the 1960s

1962 Esso guide to London (Heathrow) Airport 1965 New Esso guide to London Airport 1968 New Esso guide to Heathrow Airport London ca1964 Esso Guide to Irish Airports

There are at least three versions of an Esso guide to London Airport (Heathrow) from the 1960s (from L-R, above, 1962, 1965 & 1968) and one to Irish airports, which dates from around 1963-4. It is not known if other versions of these maps exist. The London airport maps were all prepared by Samson Clark & Co. Ltd., but the Irish guide covering Dublin, Cork and Shannon airports was by Browne & Nolan Ltd. All the versions unfolded like a normal sheet map, although the Irish guide (shown unfolded) had a side fold compared to the more common top fold on the London ones. All the London guides had different front and rear cover designs; the rear of the 1962 edition is shown below left.

Rear of 1962 Esso guide to London (Heathrow) Airport Some of the airlines shown on the 1968 Esso guide Esso refuelling the airlines, from 1965 guide An Aer Lingus Carvair on the 1964 Esso Guide

Map of Cork airport from 1964 Esso Guide The inside of these guides is notable for a wide variety of images, mainly of aeroplanes. Each includes profiles of a plane from each of the main airlines operating at the airport: the number shown at London rose from 44 to 51 between 1962 and 1968. The image above comes from the 1968 map and shows Aerolineas Argentinas, BEA, Iberia and Luxair. In contrast there were only six airlines at Dublin and Cork, with 7 at Shannon on the Irish map. Aer Lingus was listed at each airport - indeed the entire map strongly features the Irish flag carrier, with a route plan for the airline and a large picture of cargo being loaded into the nose of one of their planes. But the most notable picture shows a cutaway view of one of their Carvair ATL 98 craft, showing how it could take 5 small motor cars as well as 22-34 passengers behind a movable bulkhead. All the guides also included more or less conventional maps of the airports and surroundings; Cork is shown left.
Esso was keen to stress that its fuels were widely used at the airports, and each showed one or more Esso tankers. The top one on the 1965 London Airport map is described as The Python, world's largest mobile refueller - Esso's answer to the big demand. Length: 60 feet; capacity 12,000 Imperial gallons. The Irish map included a photo of its tanker, noting that a big jet may have up to 20,000 gallons stored inside its wings, or enough to keep the average Irish motorist motoring happily for 50 years!

Top of PageFinally (and as always), please send me an e-mail if you have Esso airport guides or maps from any other parts of Europe.

Text and layout © Ian Byrne, 2002

All original copyrights in logos and map extracts and images are acknowledged and images are included on this site for identification purposes only.