|AUSTRALIAN AIRLINES 1970s
A selection of my photographs of the airliners of the decade
|The decade began with the two Australian domestic carriers Trans-Australia Airlines and Ansett Airlines of Australia locked in
the Federal Government's infamous Two Airline Policy which required like equipment, routes and schedules. Here each
airline's Boeing 727-100 series arrive at Perth from Melbourne within minutes of each other during April 1972.
|Ansett and TAA began replacing their original Boeing 727s with stretched 727-200 series, like VH-RMX seen at Perth
in September 1974. Black and white film does not do justice to the striking 1970s Ansett red and back "Delta" scheme.
|First generation TAA Boeing 727-100s VH-TJD and VH-TJE sold to USA seen at Long Beach, California September 1979
parked at AiResearch Aviation awaiting freighter conversions. Photo from the window of a Catalina Island commuter.
|Douglas DC-9s were mainline equipment for both TAA and Ansett, Reg Ansett saying they were the most economical airliner
he had ever operated since 1936. Here DC-9-31 VH-CZG passes a TAA Boeing 727-200 stretched series at Perth.
|In Melbourne, international airlines moved from Essendon Airport to the new Tullamarine in June 1970, followed by the
domestic airlines a year later during the night of 19-20 June 1971. Aviation enthusiast David Prossor marked the occasion
by flying the first VFR private light aircraft to park at the empty airline parking bays early morning on 20 June 1971.
Tullamarine became Melbourne Airport and featured a retired DC-3 VH-AES painted in original 1946 TAA markings suspended
over the car park at the TAA end of the terminal building. After years in the weather it was taken down and restored to airworthy
by a dedicated group of TAA staff. VH-AES still flies today operated by HARS at Illawarra Regional NSW.
|Fokker F.27 Friendships flew secondary routes with both airlines. VH-TFW boards passengers after at Tennant Creek NT
after a short stop on the "milk run"from Darwin to Alice Springs via outback towns in January 1979.
|In Western Australia, Ansett associate MacRobertson-Miller Airlines succesfully pioneered turbojet airliner services to
outback airfields using Fokker F.27 Fellowships. The MMA fleet would grow to 7 Fellowships. VH-FKE Perth May 1979.
|Ansett Airlines spread its large F.27 fleet across associated airlines Airlines of NSW, Airlines of SA and MMA.
VH-FNO seen at Perth in January 1979 during a period on lease to MMA to supplement their F.28 Fellowships.
|Airlines of NSW F.27 VH-FNP seen at Casino NSW September 1968 had previously been with Airlines of South Australia.
|Independent operator East-West Airlines operated a fleet of F.27 Friendships on NSW intrastate services from Sydney.
VH-MMB recently purchased from MMA is pictured at Albury early on a foggy morning in June 1972.
The Department of Civil Aviation also operated three F.27 Friendships for radio navigation aid calibration and SAR duties.
VH-CAV was at Port Hedland WA in May 1971.
TAA operated DHC-6 Twin Otters along the Queensland coast on scheduled services between major towns as well as
carrying tourists to Great Barrier Reef holiday resorts. VH-TGH at Mackay in July 1975
|MMA flew Twin Otters between iron ore towns in WA's Pilbara region and also from Derby through the Kimberley region.
VH-MMY "RMA Yampi"seen at Paraburdoo WA in October 1971 had the original short nose.
|Ansett and TAA each retired their three Lockheed Electras from passenger service in 1971. TAA sold theirs overseas but Ansett
had their theirs converted to freighters with large rear cargo door and roller floor for containers. It proved a wise decision because
Ansett Air Freight boomed during the 1970s and a fourth freighter Electra was imported. VH-RMB at Perth December 1978.
|Qantas began the decade with a Boeing 707-338C fleet, replacing the original "short" Boeing 707-138Bs
Here's Boeing 707-338C VH-EAD "City of Ballarat" at Perth in March 1976.
|Qantas 707s were replaced by Boeing 747s, VH-EBF being an early 747-200 series delivered new to Qantas in August 1973
|In those more relaxed days, airline captains could be persuaded to make minor diversions for fly-pasts at country airshows while
on scheduled passenger flights. This Qantas Boeing 747 livened an air pageant at Northam WA in November 1978.
|At the smaller end of the scale, DH.114 Herons re-engined with Lycoming engines were a very efficient 14 passenger airliner.
Connellan Airways at Alice Springs was renamed Connair in 1970 using a fleet of Lycoming Herons.
Connair supplemented its Herons with passenger Douglas DC-3s on the higher yield routes.
Here DC-3 VH-UPQ loads at Kununurra WA for a service to Darwin in October 1975
|Connair DC-3 VH-MIN at Darwin in January 1979
|At Cairns, Far North Queensland, Bush Pilots Airways flew DC-3s alongside a large feet of modern GA types.
Unfortunately the marketing people had succeeded in changing the legendary name to just BPA and within a few years
the proud airline would be rebranded as Air Queensland - and oblivion. VH-EDC at Cairns April 1978.
Several Bush Pilots Airways DC-3s were "Cargomaster"freighters, in high demand during the tropical Wet Season when
northern roads become impassable to road transport. DC-3 VH-MAL at Cairns in April 1978.
|BPA's Britten-Norman BN-2A-III Trislander VH-BSP on a scheduled service at Emerald Qld in September 1974.
|And the Third Level airlines
|The 1970s were a boom period for the proliferation of Third Level airlines, also known as "commuter airlines".
During 1967 DCA Air Navigation Regulations had been changed to allow approved General Aviation charter companies to conduct scheduled passenger and mail services over routes that were not profitable for the major airlines with larger aircraft. This coincided with the airlines retiring their DC-3s which had served country towns and low-yield routes, often with a Government subsidy, for many years.
|Nationwide Air Services Cessna 402 VH-ELV arrives at Goondiwindi Qld on a scheduled service in August 1974.
|Hazelton Air Services operated a network of NSW routes. PA-31 Navajo Chieftan VH-DVG at home base Cudal April 1978.
|Skyway Airlines Piper PA-31 Navajo Chieftan VH-TWB on a scheduled service at Quirindi NSW in April 1978.
|Burnett Airways Britten-Norman Trislander VH-BSP taxies at Monto Qld with passengers for Brisbane, June 1975.
|Emu Airways, Adelaide flew scheduled services to Kangaroo Island and SA country towns. Adelaide Airport September 1977.