On July 26th 1957 Eagle registered an associate company in Bermuda, Eagle Airways (Bermuda) Ltd. It was an imaginative attempt, not without commercial risks involved, to spread its wings to other pastures where more freedom from the closed shop attitude existed towards independent airlines unlike the UK.
On March 7th 1958 Flight Magazine records Eagle Airways would probably be the fourth carrier on the busy route between Bermuda and New York.
May the 1st was to be the day that Harold Bamberg’s Eagle Airways Bermuda would be inaugurating his Viscount operation on this service, initially a weekly frequency of seven flights in each direction.
The Bermuda government were very keen to see another British operator on this route and gave Eagle all the support it could. Eagle was incorporated under Bermuda law and was therefore free to apply for operating rights with no interjection from the UK, neither Government nor B.O.A.C. The Bermuda government had on various occasions expressed unhappiness about the politics of B.O.A.C. Bad feelings arose when the Corporation withdrew the Bermuda New York service in 1950 for a period of 14 months ‘owing to poor load factors’. The Bermuda government had been pressing to increase the corporation’s flight frequency. Their view being that they needed more flights bringing holiday/ business activities to the Island. So another British airline was welcomed.
In April 1958 on a Sunday Morning at Blackbushe (Eagles Main base in the UK) a Vickers Viscount 805 of Eagle Airways VR-BAX set off for a new life in sunny Bermuda. Across the passenger door was painted ‘The Bermuda Airline’.
The significance of the service was that it marked the first occasion on which a British independent had found an opportunity to compete in scheduled operation with B.W.I.A. a subsidiary of the mighty B.O.A.C.
So on that day May 1st 1958 an Eagle Viscount in a resplendent colour scheme set off to New York. Thus began Eagles Western Hemisphere operation.