De Havilland designed the DH.51 as an economical touring biplane, based on the 90 hp (67 kW) RAF 1A engine which was available from war-surplus stocks. The aircraft was later fitted with an ADC Airdisco Air-cooled V8 piston engine, which considerably improved performance but was no longer as cheap to operate. As a result, only three aircraft were built.
The first aircraft was exported to Australia in 1927, as a floatplane it capsized in Sydney Harbour in January 1931. The second aircraft was used in Britain until it was scrapped in 1933. The third aircraft was exported to Kenya in 1929. It returned to Britain in 1965 and is still in use today.
So a really rare beast! We were very fortunate to be given access to it for the filming of the British Airways Aviators Commercial. I think we were respectful and professional enough that we’d be welcome back for another go if it suited your production! Give us a call to discuss.