Ex-RAAF Orion plane to fly over Parkes as part of training exercise

FLY OVER: This P3 Orion plane now calls Parkes home and has just celebrated 50 years of service to the nation. One like this will be flying over Parkes on Thursday morning.
FLY OVER: This P3 Orion plane now calls Parkes home and has just celebrated 50 years of service to the nation. One like this will be flying over Parkes on Thursday morning.

Parkes skies will have a visit by an ex-RAAF Orion aircraft tomorrow morning, about 11am.

The Orion is a big noisy four-engine maritime patrol aircraft that is operated by the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS) and flown for heritage and historical purposes.

The aircraft is flying to Parkes for training purposes in preparation for a major air show in Adelaide later this month.

The aircraft will not land but Mike De La Hunty from HARS said if people would like to see what the aircraft would look like up close, there is one on display at the HARS Parkes Aviation Museum.

In other HARS Parkes Aviation Museum news...

The DC3 aircraft that made an appearance at Parkes for the 2019 AirVenture Australia airshow and expo brought back memories for many people who had flown into or out of the Parkes Airport in East West Airlines DC3 aircraft during the 1960s.

AirVenture visitors came on board and related many stories of first flight adventures.

Mr De La Hunty said a frequent comment was having to walk "up hill" to get to the cockpit area.

"Another comment was the distinctive sound of it's big round noisy engines," he said.

Story continues below.

THOSE WERE THE DAYS: The DC3 aircraft brought back many memories for those who attended the 2019 AirVenture Australia airshow and expo at Parkes in September.

THOSE WERE THE DAYS: The DC3 aircraft brought back many memories for those who attended the 2019 AirVenture Australia airshow and expo at Parkes in September.

The Douglas DC3 has flown all over the world and this aircraft was the first aircraft to operate a scheduled service with the then, new airline, Trans Australian Airlines that later became Australian and now Qantas Domestic.

It was built in 1942 for the US Army Air Force and flew the first TAA service in September 1946.

It flew domestic routes in Australia and then went to New Guinea and flew the Sunbird service there for TAA.

In addition to all the AirVenture aircraft HARS Parkes Aviation Museum displayed was the de Havilland Heron, an aircraft of the type that flew into Parkes with Butler Air Transport between 1954 and 1956.

The Heron was restored by HARS volunteers and students from Parkes High School who have assisted the museum over the past three years to restore other aircraft on display.

The museum has more aircraft arriving soon and is looking for volunteers to join as hands-on types or as tour guides.

For those interested, just talk to any of the volunteers in the museum.

ALSO MAKING NEWS: