Just spent a fruitless half hour trying to cut and paste a photo of something that bloke wouldn’t have in his collection, a set of Golden Fleece H.C. Sleigh Aviation division pilots wings. I worked in a Golden Fleece servo (not legal for an apprentice to work at another job) after hours to get a few bob together for flying lessons in the days when the driveway attendant pumped the fuel and washed the windscreens. Then years later when they had the franchise to flog aeroplanes from Hawker, Mitsubishi, Partenavia, Piaggio, Rockwell, and also ran DC3 freighters, and again when the government got serious about Customs and Surveillance Sleigh won the contract and did a marvellous job and spent a fortune training their aircrew. They looked after their staff, one example is that one of my kids had his appendix rupture when I was away halfway around the World somewhere so they paid for all the hospital expenses and sent the kid and my mother to one of the Whitsunday Islands for a few weeks so the kid could recuperate, all at no expense to me and got all offended when I tried to repay them. They expected the best, their equipment was the best, the employees gave their best, and they were looked after. Our Australia was a better place when they were around.
great comment, thanks.
I remember those restaurants well, and also the Oak Milk bar up Newcastle way. I guess MacDonalds had better marketing or did not pay their staff as well.
Did not know they sold aircraft. The Partenavia was probably the worst of the bunch.
They used to ferry the Partenavia’s out from wherever they were built in Italy and in theory it was a “jolly” for DC3 captains who mostly flew night freight and needed a break. I always declined for they used to bring up to half a dozen at a time (I think) and the bloke in charge of the operation or “ferry master” was an ex WW2 Lancaster captain who had never bothered or wasn’t able to pass the Australian exams to allow him to fly aeroplanes above 5.7 tons in command. He was a scoundrels scoundrel and knew every trick of bastardry in the book and some not even printed in a book, but didn’t practice that on the company. The bean counters used to issue him with the required loot for the group travel expenses and he would handle all the transactions of graft, corruption, and shonky business with the various customs and immigration, first class accommodation, tucker, booze, and of course feminine company. One supposes he made a small profit himself along the way. I think that they may have been the largest operator of Aero Commander aeroplanes in the World for we had 24 of them. When onboard very low frequency (VLF) navigational systems came into vogue we got one of every know breed and mounted them in a Partenavia, stuck a technician on board with the pilot, and sent it all around Australia. The most accurate one was made by Collins so they fitted one to each of the Aero Commanders. The Yanks used/use VLF for submarine coms for the low frequency signal follows the nap of the Earth but a receiver could reference several stations around the World and get a small triangle of position and reasonably accurate to yards or several hundred yards. Now of course every mobile telephone is a GPS receiver accurate to inches so that stuff is like dinosaurs, obsolete.
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