There was a crew change over in Oban so a great chance to get everyone together. From left to right, Crew Chiefs David Legg and Shaun Jarvis, Project Hawker Leader and Co-Pilot Jeff Boyling and Captains John Warman and Rod Brooking with the star member G-PBYA in the background. Well done to all from the organiser!
On Saturday 24th the IWM Duxford based Catalina G-PBYA flew an orbit over Loughshinny where Harry Hawker’s attempt to fly a Circuit of Britain had come to an end. The Catalina completed the Circuit of Britain on Sunday 25th August 2013, nearly 100 years after the first attempt. On Wednesday 28th, Jeff Boyling paid a visit to Loughshinny to meet some of the locals involved in their own commemoration to Harry Hawker. Jeff was met by local resident Cepta Butler, Kevin Murray of the Loughshinny Historical Association, aviation historian Bob Montgomery and Councillor Ciaran Byrne. It was a sunny day and the scene of Harry’s mishap was inspected along with the plaque unveiled on the Sunday by a representative of the Australian Government.
A piece of the jigsaw is missing so I am off to Loughshinny on Wednesday. That will allow me to see the plaque unveiled by the Australian Ambassador plus meet the locals. No doubt I will see photos but will I find any aircraft remains is the big question?
The IWM Duxford based Catalina G-PBYA operated by Plane Sailing Air Displays Ltd returned safely to Duxford yesterday afternoon. The Catalina had spent 5 days on a Circuit of Britain to commemorate 100 years since the attempt by Harry Hawker and Harry Kauper in a Sopwith Waterplane. Although the flight has been successfully completed there is still a lot to do. The website will be updated with information and photos of the flight over the coming weeks. There are hundreds of emails, posts and comments to be responded to and that is on the “to do” list. For now, a big thank you to all who have been involved. You have contributed to a truly memorable experience!
The Catalina has left Oban slightly later than expected but is now on route to Dublin.
Yesterday Miss Pick Up arrived in Oban after a long day of flying. Today the Catalina and crew are in Oban for a display in the morning over Oban Bay at 10:30 and will then return to Oban Airport and be open to the public from 12:30. Due to deteriorating weather the local flight will now take place directly after the display so keep your eyes peeled!
The aircraft will be staying in Oban until Saturday before departing at 11:00 to fly on to Dublin and then Newquay via Pembroke Dock.
Jeff apologises for not responding to all emails, comments and text messages. As you can imagine he has been busy flying! He will endeavour to respond to all messages as soon as he is able.
Jon Butts, Mike Cross, Karl Drage have all taken some excellent photos which you can see here.
Today’s the day! As long as there are no last minute delays from 10:30 onwards you should be able to track the Catalina’s progress here.
A map of the 2013 route is now available here. A live map will be made available tomorrow, updating every 10 minutes with the Catalina’s location.