The South African Airforce Museum held their monthly flying/training day on Saturday 3 March, after an intensive advertising assault on social media the turnout was nothing short of remarkable. It is estimated that there were over two thousand members of the public that entered the gates, hopefully this translated to income in the donation boxes dotted around the base.
The SAAF Museum counts on donations from the general public and the corporate world to keep these wonderful “Old ladies of the Air” in flying condition and the endless cost of keeping the static displays in an acceptable condition.
The SAAF Museum hold these monthly flying days to keep all there pilots current on the various museum aircraft and have over the years become big attraction for the aviation loving Pretoria public. The entrance to Swartkop Air Force is free for anyone interested in a wonderful day filled with aviation fun.
The Windsock Restaurant is always open on flying days to take care of the visitor’s food and drink needs. The Windsock is situated in the old Photography section building and it is right on the flight line so no one misses the action while they are getting there food.
If you would prefer a Boerie roll The Friends of the Airforce Museum are ready to assist with that, the friends are a group of volunteers that give up their time to assist in the maintenance of the museum exhibits. They are currently busy with many projects one of them being the restoration of the Spitfire that was unfortunately crashed years ago.
As has become customary the mornings flying was kicked off a skydiving display by members of the Golden Eagles Skydiving team, the skydivers exited the museums Atlas Kudu.
The Museums Selection of Helicopters kept everyone entertained with hoisting exercises and practicing their sequence for the upcoming SAAF Museum Airshow.
Unfortunately the museums Vampire and Albatross went technical and were unable to take part in the day’s entertainment, their absence was more than made up for by many Harvard flights by both the Museum and The Harvard Club of SA. The Harvard Club offer flights to the public in these magical machines that many of the older generation pilots in South Africa cut there flying teeth on.
The Patchen Explorer, a one of a kind aircraft that was given to the SAAF to test in the 60’s, always entertains the crowds when it flies. The SAAF never ordered any Patchen Explorers opting rather for the Atlas Bosbok.
Three fixed wing aircraft from the Bush war era closed of the day with a formation flight, The Atlas Kudu, Atlas Bosbok and Cessna 185 have all been known to bite the unsuspecting pilot as soon as he lets his guard down.
The next Flying Day will be on the 7 April, if you love aviation and feel like a day out this is definitely the place to be.
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