Argosy? Isn't it that fat twin-boom military transport?
No, this one is older and much slender. The original Armstrong Whitworth Argosy was a British three-engine biplane airliner built by Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft, and operated by Imperial Airways from 1926 to 1935.
The Armstrong Whitworth A.W.154 Argosy stemmed from a declaration by Imperial Airways that all its aircraft would be multi-engine designs, on the grounds of safety. They were intended to replace the older single-engine de Havilland aircraft that Imperial Airways had inherited from its constituent companies, mainly Daimler Airway.
The Argosy was initially used on European routes (later operating on services to South Africa), with the fleet named after cities. Argosies implemented the world's first "named" air service, the luxury 'Silver Wing' service from London to Paris, using Argosy City of Birmingham (G-EBLO). Two seats were removed, and replaced with a bar, and a steward was in attendance.
The passenger cabin of an Imperial Airways Argosy, which could accommodate 18 passengers. Posing at the rear is the steward who served them a buffet lunch as part of the airline's "Silver Wing" service:
Three Argosies were lost during service with Imperial Airways, one being written off in a forced landing near Aswan, and one during a training accident, both in 1931, with no injuries in either accident. On 28 March 1933, however, an Argosy G-AACI City of Liverpool caught fire over Belgium, causing a crash in which all three crew and 12 passengers were killed.
Argosies continued in service with Imperial Airways until 1935, with the last example G-AACJ City of Manchester being used for joy-riding by United Airways Ltd of Stanley Park Aerodrome (Blackpool), that was later merged into British Airways Ltd. It continued in use with British Airways until December 1936.
Argosy Mk I : Three-engined airliner. Powered by three 385 hp (287 kW) Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar IIIA radial piston engines. Later fitted with Jaguar IVA engines. Three constructed.
Argosy Mk II : Three-engined airliner. Powered by three 420 hp (310 kW) Armstrong Siddeley Jaguar IVA radial piston engines. Four constructed.
Specs (Argosy II)
Poster by Harold McCready via Vintage Poster