Paul Joseph has written an article for the online magazine TravelMag.com that includes the Aviation Heritage Museum as a feature place to visit in Perth WA. You can see the article at........ http://www.travelmag.com/articles/unique-things-to-do-in-perth/
The Museum would like to thank Paul for this great feature in TravelMag.com
The Legacy of the WW1 Flyers premièred at the AFA club was a rousing success. Over a hundred people attended and the movie received a standing ovation at the end. Many patrons asked if they could purchase the movie. It is now for sale and in stock at the Museum Gift Shop or by phone on 08 93114470. We are now organising showings at the other RAAFA Estates and hope to do a road show next month to show the movie to the estate residents and visitors. Contact your RAAFA Estate manager for dates after the first of March.
Delivered to the RAAF in November 1973 and was assigned to 35 Squadron in Townsville. Later it served with 5 Squadron at Fairbairn, Canberra and also on detachment to Pearce. Transferred to Army Aviation Corps between December 1989 and January 1990 and assigned to 171 Squadron, 1st Aviation Regiment at Oakey. Moved to A.R.D.U. at Edinburgh in August 2007, wearing dual Air Force and Army titles. Last flight was from Edinburgh to Archerfield on December 12, 2007.
It was then inhibited and moved to Damascus Barracks at Meeandah, Brisbane. Was allocated to RAAFA Aviation Heritage Museum of W.A. in 2012 and after about 18 months of wrangling, paper work and payments it finally left the barracks on 20 July, 2014 on a Goldstar Transport semi for the trip across the country. It finally arrived at the museum at Bull Creek on the morning of July 29 and was lifted off the truck by a crane from Fremantle Cranes onto it’s display area. During the day W.A. veterans from 9 Squadron, Col Hendly and Peter Robertson and museum workshop staff under Mal Sweetman assembled the main rotors and shaft. Next day, Mal gave it a good clean and removed the protection from the cockpit and cabin windows and cleaned the interior. It will be covered by a roof in it’s outdoor display area later this year. (Update - it is now displayed under a camouflage net per the last photo...Steve).
On May 15th 2014 the Aviation Heritage Museum took delivery of a Rolls Royce Merlin from a WW2 Mosquito aircraft. The engine was fired up within 15 minutes of delivery and ran fine. We have been running the engine once or twice a week on Thursdays and Saturdays. We will continue to run the engine on Saturdays at noon, at least. The Thursday workshop guy have started the servicing of the engine and sometimes fire it up for a test on Thursdays. The Museum would like to thank the Qantas Museum in NSW for their help in acquiring the engine and to Peter Shepard and Ian Durrant for their help in organising the fuel and other bits to make it run. If you would like to help up continue to run the Merlin and preserve our heritage then please make a donation using the portal on our home page.
27/11/2013 - Received email from Leone that a F-86 was at a salvage yard. Turns out it was at the Perth Metals Recycler at 12 Whyalla in Willetton. Talked to Matt Sharkey and arranged to see it. Made a deal for $2k for the aircraft. Told him that I would let him know by Friday. That is when they were going to scrap it. It was going to be turned into little square Aluminium blocks. Talked to President of RAAFA, Graeme Bland about acquisition of F-86. Positive. Talked to CEO John Murray and he was positive. Called Matt and he had three other customers want it, I told him we would take it.
28/11/2013 - Received permission from CEO to go ahead with the purchase. Got cheque from CEO. Went to the salvage yard with Malcolm Sweetman (Team Leader of the workshop to meet with Goldstar Transport to discuss move. Paid the money and got donation form signed. Goldstar will pick up tomorrow and deliver it to the Museum.
29/11/2013 - Goldstar transport picked up the F-86 from the salvage yard in Willerton on two trucks. They had arranged for a crane to meet them at the Museum. The plane was off loaded without incident into the side yard off the South Wing.
4/11/2013 - A sign up list was put on the front desk appealing for volunteers to joon a committee and or a restoration group for the F-86. Information on the craft was collected by Mike Mirkavic.
6/12/2013 - The workshop guys moved the wings to the East side of the Museum to allow access to the Museum through the East gate. Maintenance covered the fuselage with a tarp.
It was a late September morning a couple of years ago when some of the display volunteers were cleaning out one of the museums’ large storage shed. They were busily preparing for the removal of two large Heron wings to make space for the building of a new paint room. The shed had collected a huge amount of junk over the years with dirty old tyres, various broken aircraft parts and trash piled high. Among the mountain of junk was a very old and dirty aluminium and steel aeroplane seat from some unknown craft. There was something interesting about the seat, so after looking for an accessioning number and finding none, I asked one of the volunteers where it had come from, a “don’t know” was the short answer. The seat was put aside, next the “to be trashed” pile while the rest was removed and separated.
Luckily just few hours later, a tall middle-aged museum visitor happened to wander into my office. He asked what was going to happen to that old DC-3 seat, sitting out by the storage shed. Realising that he might know something about the seat, I asked him if he knew its history. He proudly told me how the seat had been recovered by his father during WW2 and how it had sat in their shed in the back yard for decades. As kids they used to have many adventures with it, pretending to be pilots and shooting down all manner of enemy aircraft. His father had told him that it was very valuable seat and that someday it should be put in a museum. Just before he died, his father did donate it to the Museum. But somehow, over the years, it had got moved, then misplaced and then ended up in the storage shed, covered in dirt. When I asked if he knew where the seat had come from, he said it was from the “Diamond Dakota”.
On March 3rd 1942 a KLM DC3 was lumbering down the WA coast, full of refugees fleeing the advancing Japanese army. Although unarmed and in commercial service, the plane was attacked and shot down by Japanese Zeros, returning from their earlier attack on Broome, Western Australia. During the attack, one of the Dakotas’ engines caught fire and the pilot put the plane into a steep spiral dive to avoid the Zeros. The pilot was Russian World War I ace Ivan Smirnov. He had to use all of his flying skill to control the plane. After he recovered to straight and level, the DC-3 with engine still on fire, was put on a course to land on Carnot Bay, eighty kilometres north of Broome. Knowing the plane couldn’t land on the beach, his only option was to ditch as close to shore as possible. Once the plane had come to a stop, Ivan helped get all the passengers out of the plane. As the Japanese continued to shoot at them, they ran up the beach and hid in the sand dunes. Four passengers died during the attack including a baby and its’ mother. Smirnov was shot four times but amazingly survived. As well as passengers, the plane was carrying £300,000 worth of diamonds. Unfortunately the diamonds were lost in the ocean during the scramble to safety.
Needless to say Captain Smirnov’s “Diamond Dakota” pilots seat (complete with Japanese bullet hole) has now been lovingly preserved and has pride of place underneath the C-47 Dakota at the Aviation Heritage Museum in Bull Creek Western Australia. The accessioning number has been found and this very important artefact will never again end up in the back of a dusty storage shed.
Often I get asked how to become a volunteer at the Aviation Heritage Museum and what is involved. I hope this helps...
If you want to volunteer in the Museum you must first ask yourself why do you want to volunteer. Most people volunteer somewhere because they have a bit of time and want to do something valuable for someone else or the community. The next question you need to ask is, when are you available? It is no use going through the process of becoming a volunteer and then finding out you are too busy to come in. At the Aviation Museum, most volunteers work from 9:30 am till 3:30 pm one or two days a week. That means every week, month in and month out, often for years or even decades. This is a real commitment. Not a fleeting fancy. Occasionally a person will come in and want to volunteer for a limited time, such as a college student that has some time during school break or a person looking for a job. This is okay, but it is important to mention this up front so that the manager can organise a position appropriately. The jobs that these volunteers do are usually cleaning, dusting or helping in the gift shop. The last thing the Museum needs is a volunteer to start a job and then leave it half finished.
So lets assume that you are really interested in committing to a day a week for the foreseeable future and want to help the Museum. Then the first thing to do is to talk to your spouse, children or any extended family member that will be affected by your commitment. Occasionally a volunteer will start working at the Museum and then find out that their spouse or grown children need their time more than they expected and they can not continue or they must reduce their volunteering time at the Museum. Talk to your family and discuss why you want to volunteer, how much time you plan to commit and the ways volunteering may impact on your relationship. It is often at this time that the volunteer determines which days they will be able to work and how much of a commitment they can afford.
Next take stock of what life skills you have developed but don't discount them. Often a volunteering organisation will have positions that you wouldn't expect. For example the Aviation Heritage Museum has a plastic model group, a picture framer, a mural artist, an electronic engineer and a web designer. They are all volunteers. So when you have your interview, make sure you mention your skills. Also you may want to learn a new skill. The Museum often takes on new volunteers that want to learn to do something different. If you have an great idea and want to do something that is unusual, ask the manager during the interview. You might be surprised.
When you front up for the interview, bring a picture ID and your resume if you have one. The interview is all about finding out what commitment you want to make and where you might fit into the Museum. The manager is looking for someone that has skills that the Museum needs. There is no pressure or hard questions, it's all about the volunteer and the Museum.
Once you have done a bit of paperwork the manager will show you around the Museum and explain where the sign in sheet and break-room are and other facilities of the Museum. He will make a copy of your picture ID for the police check and arrange for a time that you can come in for a safety induction. After the interview the manager will submit the paperwork for the police check to the RAAFA office. RAAFA pays for the police check. You don't need a working with children card unless you are going to volunteer with the youth club. Usually the first day you start, the manager will do your safety induction with you. This consist of explaining your responsibilities under the WA OH&S act (1984) and then a walk around the Museum in order to show you where the safety equipment is located. Once this is done you will be introduced to your team leader and he or she will start you working in the Museum.
To become a volunteer at the Museum visit the Museum any day from 10am till 4pm and ask for a volunteer application or call the manager direct on 93114471 and make an appointment to come in for an interview.
The September 2013 sustainability workshops were a huge success. The attendance was good considering the second round was on grand final day. Everyone that attended came away with a feeling that the Museum is moving forward and in a positive direction. There were loads of ideas and frank discussions about the strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats that exist in the Museum. Many of the projects that were put forward in the 2009 workshop were found to have been implemented although there is much to be done.
The workshop gave everyone that attended a chance to have their say and add to the conversational mix on how to move forward in the Museum. A final report on the workshops will be published before the 1st of November 2013.
I would like to thank all those that attended and if you didn't have a chance to attend, then you can get a questionnaire at the front desk of the Museum and leave it on my desk. If I am not there, then leave it with the person at the front desk. The closing date is Saturday the 5th of October. All questionnaires are confidential.
The F-111 cockpit module was delivered on the 31st of May. The module is next to the Spitfire.
We had the hand over ceremony on the 29th of June.
The module is now available for inspection in the North Wing of the Aviation Heritage Museum.
The WW1 display needs a bit of a freshening up, so have put in artificial grass under the aeroplanes. Trevor’s Carpet in Willerton on High Road gave us a huge discount as they are great supporters of the Museum. We are looking for some help on this as the Museum needs to come up with the balance of $2,600. If you can donate a bit please contact us on 93114471.
The Vietnam display is almost completed. We are waiting on the plants for the garden, 400 sandbags to be filled and the Huey itself. We are still looking for donations to complete this project. Also we are looking for a sponsor to help purchase vents for the North Wing.