When author and historian Sue Bailey was doing research for her new book, A History Of Woodsmoor, she was told of a plane in an old garage on Edmonton Road,Woodsmoor, Stockport.
Intrigued by this, but not sure how to find out more, Sue put it to one side until quite by accident she came across a record of a photo in the Manchester Library’s Archive captioned “Lloyd Philip Robinson on fuselage of Avian aircraft, G-EBZM, loaded on large lorry at Northern Aircraft Preservation Society premises at Woodsmoor Stockport, 1970”.
She obtained the photograph happy that she had evidence of a connection between Woodsmoor and the plane, but there was more to come.
With the plane’s registration, it didn’t take long to find a website and blog that gave the back story to the plane.
It was an Avro Avian built at Newton Heath in 1928 and used for pleasure flights on Southport Beach.
Having crashed into a telegraph cable, it was dismantled and put into storage, first in Southport and then in a building at Ringway Airport. now Manchester Airport.
Sue then tracked down Lloyd Robinson to the Rossendale Aviation Society last year.
When they got in touch, he explained that in 1962 he and a group of young fellow aircraft enthusiasts acquired the dismantled aircraft and carted the pieces to the garage that belonged to Woodsmoor Farm.
Naming themselves the ‘Northern Aircraft Preservation Society’, they set about rebuilding the plane. Woodsmoor was chosen because one of the members lived there.
Having expected that to be the end of the story, Sue was delighted to hear that Lloyd had a collection of photos taken when the plane was being renovated in Woodsmoor between 1964 and 1970.
Not only did it show the plane but also the long set of garages that housed it.
It seems that when the the group had to leave Woodsmoor in 1970, the work on the Avro Avian continued.
It toured various air shows, including one in the Armory of Greek Street, Stockport, before ending up at the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry, fully rebuilt and restored to its former glory.
And what of the garages? They were demolished along with the old farmhouse in the early 1970s to make way for housing.