Charleville Aerodrome & Former Flight Service Unit - 2001

Historic Charleville aerodrome has changed a lot since it was the birthplace of the fledgling Q.A.N.T.A.S., whose initial route linked the Queensland railheads of Charleville, Longreach and Cloncurry. The inaugural Q.A.N.T.A.S. scheduled service departed Charleville on 2 November 1922, piloted by Paul McGinness.

The views above and below show the aerodrome on 8 July 2001, taken from Qantas' Douglas DC-3 VH-AES Hawdon. The upper photo, looking east, gives a good impression of the vast, empty spaces of the Queensland outback, and why the development of air transport was so important.

The photo below gives a closer look at the main part of the aerodrome, looking south-west. The threshold of Runway 18, the smaller of the two runways, can be seen and the positions of the Royal Flying Doctor Service hangar and the former Flight Service Unit (FSU), still standing, are marked.

The photo below shows the former Charleville FSU which closed in the early 1990s as part of the consolidation of Flight Service into capital city Flight Service Centres, and subsequent absorbtion into Air Traffic Control. The satellite dishes that made this possible can be seen at left.

Behind the FSU are HF receiver masts, still in use, whilst to the right is the Station Power House with the rotating aerodrome beacon in front of it. The FSU building has since been removed, however its Briefing Counter survives in the Airways Museum.

Click here to see some photos of the FSU whilst operational in 1987.


The Aerodrome Chart below dates from 27 November 2003 and gives a good idea of the layout of Charleville aerodrome at that time.

(Photos: Phil Vabre - Chart: Airservices Australia/CAHS collection)

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