The Opening of Quirindi Aerodrome - 1957
Like almost all country aerodromes of the day, Quirindi was designed around the Douglas DC-3, mainstay of regional airline services for many years. DCA checked the Tamarang Shire Council's proposed aerodrome site and then prepared a development plan which provided for two consolidated grass strips, both 500 ft wide. The longer was 5,800 ft while the shorter was 4,700 ft. The work to prepare the runways was conducted by the Council and local volunteer labour under the supervision of DCA, the estimated cost being £12,402. The runway work included grading, draining and sowing with couch and rye grass.
Additionally, a passenger terminal building, consisting of a waiting room, porch, office and 'septic closets' (toilets) was constructed at a cost of £2,000. The total cost of the aerodrome was estimated at £16,000.
Along with the new aerodrome came a new air service, with three southbound flights a week heading for Sydney and three northbound flights each week heading for Gunnedah or Tamworth, although East-West did hedge their bets somewhat by saying that they were "closely watching the needs of the Quirindi people in order to provide the best air service available to them, and it will depend entirely upon the demands of the people in that area just how frequent the service will be".
(Photos: CAHS/Dr KNE Bradfield collection. Diagram: Quirindi Advocate, September 24th 1957)
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