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The D31 Turbulent was designed by Roger Druine in France during the early 1950’s. It's popularity soon spread to England and when Norman Jones first saw the aircraft, he realised it was ideal for his company Rollason Aircraft and Engines at Croydon Airport to manufacture and sell. After some modifications they started producing these aircraft in 1958, of course they very soon appeared on the Tiger Club flightline and quickly became popular for fun flying and at air displays. At an empty weight of 400lbs the Turbulent weighs little more than a large motorbike and it’s light controls and low power make it an excellent aircraft for formation flying.

The picture shows Roger Druine on the left with Norman Jones on the right, does anyone know who is the gentleman in the middle?

These pictures come from the Tiger Club archives and show what is thought to be a couple of the first Druine Turbulents at Pontivy aerodrome. The second picture is from Pontivy, in the 1950’s showing the clubhouse with F-PHFQ parked outside ready for it’s next flight.

In 1959 The Duke of Edinburgh flew G-APNZ at White Waltham and soon after a radio control model was designed and the details were published in The Model Aircraft magazine to commemorate this event. G-APNZ was one of the first Rollason Turbulents to be built and the other picture shows it earlier in 1959 when it was being built. It took 4 men, six weeks to build a Turbulent under the supervision of Jimmy James, the hangar foreman at Rollasons.

 

 

 

 

 


The Tiger Club 1990 Ltd
Damyns Hall Aerodrome
Aveley Road,
Upminster,
Essex RM14 2TN

Tel: 01708 524633

Office hours 0900 to 1700

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