Corgi Austin Mini 850, RAF Station Commander

Corgi Austin Mini 850, RAF Station Commander



RAF stations are often very large plots of land, and to get around the Station Commander used a Mini, which was ideal for the role being nippy, reliable, easy to park and economical to both buy and run. It was distinguishable by the blue and red flag on the bonnet as other black Minis were used for general transport roles around RAF facilities. Many racetracks, most noticeably Silverstone and Goodwood, originated as airfield perimeter tracks and it wasn't unusual for even quite senior officers to use these Minis to perform a quick 'handling test' on the perimeter track; it was a more carefree era than today's health and safety dominated world.

 Minis were bought in large numbers by the RAF and were used for both general Mechanical Transport duties and VIP transport, being cheaper and more suitable for this role than Land-Rovers, which were used for heavy loads, towing or operating off road. Executive officers would often have a Mini as a daily duty vehicle that the MT section would pick up or drop off each weekend. BMC worked closely with government organisations, the military, the police and others, and had liaison engineers who dealt with the problems found in service and fed the information back to improve the car. These Minis were often involved in squadron high-jinks, with one apparently finding its way on to the roof of a hanger after a squadron function... 


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