Benalla was a stop-point for a historic centenary re-enactment of the first airmail flight in Australia.CHLOE WARBURTON July 14, 2014 3:53am
A historic re-enactment of the first airmail flight in Australia a century ago stopped over at Benalla Airport on Saturday.
French airman Maurice Guillaux first made the flight between Melbourne and Sydney in 1914 — the longest airmail flight in the world at that time, with an 88
The re-enactment began at Essendon Airport on Saturday morning, before touching down at Mangalore Airport.
The mail load was handed from Michele Schiffer’s Pacific Aerospace CT-4 to Benalla pilot Mark Carr’s Winjeel VH-CZE and both flew on to Benalla Airport, where they were joined by John Lindsay’s Dragon Rapide from the 1930s.
Benalla Rural City Council manager economic development and tourism Jeanie Hall said Benalla’s aviation history made it an excellent spot for a stopover in the flight.
‘‘The Aviation Museum at the airport is the historic home of the 11 EFTS Wartime Training Unit, which was stationed at Benalla from 1941 to 1945, and from where some 80 de Havilland DH.82 Tiger Moths were operated,’’ Ms Hall said.
Glider pilots joined the re-enactment, carrying mail cargoes to Wangaratta for the following leg.
The Benalla Aviation Museum commemorated the day with a special event for vintage aircraft buffs, with the chance to see the 1931 French Flying Flea at the museum.
The special mail delivery is expected to be delivered to Powerhouse Museum in Sydney today as centrepiece of a reception held to commemorate Bastille Day, conducted by the French Consul-General M Eric Berti.
Other mail loads being carried include a replica of original mail, 1785 numbered postcards, token air freight Madura Tea and Murray Valley Fruit Juice, and other items related to the French companies who have sponsored the flight.
Police are treating a fire that damaged an abandoned house near Tatura on Thursday night as suspicious.
The Tungamah Football Netball Club has completed a fairytale season to clinch the Picola and District Football Netball League South East Premiership with an emphatic 106 point win over the Katamatite Tigers at Tungamah.
Billed as ‘Fabulous Flowers and Fine Food’, Tatura’s Anglican Church Parish had a successful fundraiser on Thursday, September 4.
Moama Bowling Club's Michael Walker has been chosen for the 2014 Australian Premier League team.
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Star Tocumwal defender took her club's A grade best and fairest award last weekend, adding to her 2014 PDNL medal.
Mia Mia Cricket Club is about to field its first cricket team since 2001
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Breakout seasons from Deni Rovers Jamie Thorpe and Nick Hay have seen the pair rewarded with respective best and fairest titles.
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