Chargus of Buckinghamshire, England


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Chargus of Buckinghamshire, England

Art based on a photo of a Chargus Midas
Art based on a photo of a Chargus Midas

Chargus was run by former Royal Navy marksman and motor racing engineer Murray Rose. In 1977, he flew a Midas with a Soarmaster-type power unit at the annual British hang gliding event at Mere in Wiltshire. It was noisy and it was under-powered, but it flew.

This related topics menu links to material in the main hang gliding pages. The links here are in chronological order.

Murray Rose at Mere, Wiltshire, in 1976
Murray Rose at Mere, Wiltshire, in 1976. From a photo by Roger Middleton.

In his later years he was a successful novelist under the pen name Walter Gunn.

…there is something special about looking at a book on the shelf and knowing if I open it there is a complete and different world inside: this gives me the sense of other dimensions – other worlds that are real and existing between two covers.

— Murray Rose/Walter Gunn (1)

Murray Rose died in June 2021. (2)

Other related

Solar Wings in Birdman and Solar Wings of Wiltshire, England, where Murray Rose was Managing Director

Early powered ultralights

External links

1977 Powered Hang Gliders photo album by Don Liddard on Flickr, featuring the Soarmaster-powered Chargus Midas at Mere in Wiltshire, summer 1977. This author must have been standing near Liddard at the time. Murray received applause from those watching after he landed and shut down the engine.

Photo by Roger Middleton of Murray Rose at Mere, Wiltshire, in 1976

Team Chargus by Murray Rose, SkyWings (BHPA magazine) online, August 2018

References

1. Interview with Walter Gunn by Judith Arnopp

2. Announcement by Steve Pionk of Murray Rose’s death on British Hang Gliding History Facebook group

3 thoughts on “Chargus of Buckinghamshire, England

  1. That Chargus Midas looks remarkably similar to the Albatross Sails ASG-21 of about the same period. Very pretty gliders.

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    1. The ASG-21 (by Tom Price) looks more advanced to me in that it had an airfoil stand-up keel pocket instead of the (slightly) curved keel tube of the Midas. The ASG-21’s tips were aerodynamically cleaner too. While I have no reason to doubt that the Midas was an original design by top British pilot Martin Farnham, most British wings were copies of American designs. Indeed, the later Midas Super-E bore an uncanny resemblance to the UP Spyder. (See the third link in the preceding list.) However, in late 1976, British genius Miles Handley unveiled his bowsprit-rigged double-surface Gryphon. Thoroughly original and of unmatched performance among contemporary flex-wings. See Hang gliding 1976 part 1.

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      1. Fairly sure it was a Gryphon we flew with one day in the late 70’s. Something I never expected to see outside of the magazine, and certainly not in Vermont.

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