The British Aerospace ATP was set to be a game-changing regional aircraft, carrying on from the popular, but smaller, Jetstream series, and the BAe 748.
It was also developed to rival types from other manufacturers like the Fokker 50, ATR 42/72 and aircraft developed by de Havilland Canada.
ATP stood for Advanced TurboProp and the aircraft first flew in August 1986. Yet despite early interest, only 65 examples were built, with the final one rolling off the production line in 1996.
Who Flew the ATP?
In its early days, the BAe ATP was flown by airlines like British Airways, British Midland, British World Airlines, Loganair and Manx.
Overseas carriers like Air Europa Express, Biman Bangladesh, Merpati, SATA Air Acores, Turkish Airlines and United Express flew the type in passenger service.
In its latter days, Swedish regional carrier NextJet became the last operator of the type in passenger service.
In a bid to fly on an ATP before it was too late, I travelled across to Sweden in 2011 and flew on four sectors with NextJet. You can read about that trip here.
Who Flies the ATP Today?
Today the BAe ATP is definitely a rare type.
Most of the 65 airframes have now been scrapped, with a number also withdrawn from use or in long-term storage.
Coventry Airport in the UK’s West Midlands has a bunch which have slowly been diminishing over the past decade.
The remaining active ATPs are in use as freighters, having been converted from passenger variants. West Atlantic are now the largest operator of ATPs, with 14 examples registered to their Swedish division (although not all are active).
These are used mostly on night-time operations delivering packages between cargo hubs and regional airports in the UK and Scandinavia.
You can commonly see them at airports like East Midlands, Guernsey, Belfast International and Isle of Man in the UK; Malmo in Sweden; Billund in Denmark; Cologne Bonn in Germany; Brussels in Belgium.
While they fly at night, this means they are usually parked up during the day, so you can often see them quite easily.
Another airline which has two BAe ATPs in its fleet is Deraya Air Taxi, based at Jakarta’s Halim Airport in Indonesia. These also fly freight around the region, and not passengers.
Did you ever fly on a BAe ATP? Did you like the type, or find it unpleasant? Leave a comment below.