Hi Spirits,

Well it has rained at last [at the time of writing], and the farmers will be happy. What this has to do with this news letter I am sure I do not know. It probably has as much relevance as opening a conversation with the statement – "How do you do?" Anyway, how are you all this year? Unless you wish to phone and tell me, save it up and tell me at the luncheon.

Firstly, I would like to draw your attention to the fact that the luncheon has been moved on by one week for this year. The Grange Golf Club was unable to accommodate us on our usual Thursday due to a major golf tournament. The Committee was reluctant to change the venue considering the feedback we received at the last luncheon when the idea of perhaps a change was mooted due to rising costs; therefore, we opted to move to the 20th of October. To quote a phrase of Airport origin, "Ansett Australia apologizes for any inconvenience caused by this operational delay"  

It is interesting to note the number of small groups of people that come together from time to time to discuss, eat, drink and meet just for just, or because we belong to that wonderful Ansett family. So here is a little about them.
In 1987, Robin Beaglehole from Reservations and fellow workers started something that has been around for a long time. They meet in their old watering hole, the Union Hotel in Waymouth St. Adelaide. Its aim is simple – to get together and remember the good old days and keep up with the gossip. The luncheon is held on the second Thursday of the odd month, meeting in the bar at 1230 for a sit down at 1300. Any one who wishes to call in would be welcome and further details are available from Jim White Tel 8296 5809 Email [email protected]
ANSETT DOWN TO EARTH CLUB [as submitted by Nan Witcomb]
It all began in the 60’s when we were Ansett ANA. John North {Commercial Manager] asked Kit Clark who was Hostess Supt. at the time, to start a club along the line of TAA’s “Wings Away.” Kit promptly contacted ex hosties in Melbourne and then said to me, “Nan, you’re the one with the imagination, think up a name for it.” So I sent her a telegram saying “Welcome to the Down to Earth Club.” The aims of the club are to renew old friendships and make new ones, raising money for charity and most of all, to care for each other in time of need. There are clubs in all states and we exchange news in News letters – our newsletter writer is Von Swain, who does a superb job. We have just had a wonderful reunion in Melbourne where a voice behind me said “If you don’t do as I tell you, we’ll leave you behind” - I turned to find it was my trainer on DC3’s in 1950! Her name was Bea Schrader. In 2007 we will celebrate our 40th anniversary with a big reunion in Sydney.

Any person who flew with Ansett, ANA or any Ansett subsidiaries like Airlines of SA are all welcome. There are people in the club from flying in the 50’s until the demise of our wonderful airline. It is a fun club, we are fairly laid back and our committee meetings are open to members or would be members. If you would like more information just telephone me on 8296 5509 after 0900 any day and I will send you a simple form to complete. $20 a year will get you the news letter which is a joy to read and lets you know what is happening. Von gets it out about bi-monthly. We would love to see some more of the F/A’s who were there at the end.

Nan Witcomb [President SA Branch Ansett Down To Earth Club]  

[Thanks Nan for your contribution RCNB]    
This little group meets at various venues on an irregular basis for luncheons. Should you wish to meet your friends and renew past acquaintances contact Capt. Colin Watt on 8376 7459

THE BIKE LUNCH TEAM [Piney’s Pedalers]

The bike Lunch Team provides an opportunity to attend a monthly luncheon at different locations in and around     Adelaide. Some of the meetings held in nearby country locations like Strathalbyn and Clarendon have provided an opportunity to cycle around delightful vineyard areas and sample local produce. The name “Bike Lunch Team” would     suggest a cycling club, but most of the attendees are more appropriately defined as “Support Vehicle Drivers. Over 50   meetings have been enjoyed now and they are timed for the second Thursday of each month. Most of the participants are former Ansett Airport Traffic Staff; however, there is no restriction on membership qualification. Some of our regular attendees include pilots and QF staff.      

The so called meetings are really just an excuse to get together for lunch at a pub or a BBQ picnic site. We welcome any new members who would like to burn off some calories by joining in the leisurely paced bike ride to and from the luncheon or joining our support staff to urge us on.     

Any one interested in receiving the e-mailed monthly notices can send their e-mail address to  [email protected]

The notices, photos and list of attendees can also be seen on the “Spirits of Ansett” website   

Kind Regards,
Graham Pine

[Thanks Graham for you contribution RCNB]

You had better believe it, another little group who get together every six weeks or so under the not so poetic banner as some of the others. Whilst it is not the entire object of the exercise, eating is an integral part of the procedure. By nature this group is nomadic in character and gathers at various venues [water holes] around the metro area. One of this group’s interesting habits is that both men and women are encouraged to attend. It usually ends up a good laugh, with plenty of good food, and like other groups, it provides a catch up with friends Trevor and Margaret Tilley are at the centre of this group, and as ever they have it well organised.

Once again, my thanks go to all the Committee for the interest they show in “The Spirits of Ansett.” Their efforts ensure the  future. We are grateful for the contributions made by our sponsors. Our sponsors are displayed on our website. A special thanks to Jeff Tidswell of Tidswell Financial Services for again this year covering the postage costs for this mail out.  

No letter would be complete without mentioning John Schulze and the website. John is always searching for articles,     photographs and airline stories, which are of interest to all of us. In cupboards at home, some of you must have old photos or memorabilia which could be reproduced for the site. We would like to hear from you as we want to make the website as interesting as possible and keep it alive. Contact [email protected] for matters concerning the website.

Well “Spirits” there you have it in a nutshell I look forward to catching up with many of you at the luncheon.

Kind Regards,   
Bob Birks

The South Australian Aviation Museum has officially closed at the time of writing, and will not be reopening until later in the year. The reopening is being planned for sometime in the children's Christmas holidays. The museum is being relocated due to the proposed construction of the Port Adelaide Expressway and new Port River bridges.

The new location will be at the eastern end of the railway museum with entry off Lipson Street, Port Adelaide. For all of you who hold “things aviation” near and dear, the S.A  museum is a wonderful way to keep in touch with your old industry, and for a very modest annual subscription, it is a great way to fill in hours doing things you like  doing. There is always plenty to be done to keep the Museum in front of the public.

If anyone is interested in becoming a member please speak to either Neil Laidler [membership officer] 8276 4051 or Capt. Jim Evans [publicity officer] 8337 3280 or call in and say hello when it is back in operation. To date the administration block and workshop area is nearing completion. The hangar [with its heritage history] will be erected adjacent to the workshop. 
THEN DON’T FORGET TO Email  [email protected]  if you want us to stay in touch!!
[Completely updated May 2004]
$AU30 + $2.00 P&P *

Available now, a CD-ROM covering the airlines & aircraft of the Ansett group of airlines. Produced by Fred Niven, who spent over 37 years at Ansett, during many of which he acted as an unofficial company aviation historian.


The CD-ROM (viewable on both PCs & Macs) covers the entire Ansett group of airlines in Australia, PNG & New Zealand 1921-2002 (including aircraft disposals up to early-May 2004).  

Its comprehensive coverage includes Ansett Airways to Ansett Australia, A.N.A. & Airlines of Australia & all their predecessors, Aeropelican, Hazelton, Kendell, Skywest (& its predecessors) & ALL the other subsidiaries of A.T.I. (& their predecessors) & their aircraft, since Western Australian Airways operated Australia’s 1st scheduled air service in 1921.

Its 1,800-plus A4 pages include :

The details of each aircraft operated by any Ansett-related airline 1921-2002; including their previous & subsequent histories, up to May 2004, by registration & airline.

·         Over 3,500 photos of Ansett-related aircraft & personalities, since 1921.

·         A detailed history for each airline, including its fleet, history, points served & logos.

·         'Milestones' of Ansett Group airline-related aviation events; by airline & for the group.

·         Route-maps, timetable covers & other memorabilia & some 'What might have beens'.

·         Flight Crew Lists for all Ansett Group airlines 1921-2002.

·         Separate sections on A320s, BAe 146s, 727s, 737s, 747s, 767s, Convair CV-340/CV-440s, Fokker F.27s, F.28s & 50s, DC-2s, DC-3s, DC-4s, DC-5s, DC-6 & DC-6Bs, DC-9s, Lockheed 188 Electras & Vickers Viscounts; including 1000s of photos.

·         Details of all known Ansett Group-related aircraft accidents/incidents.


Please post money orders/cheques, made out to Fred Niven:

Fred Niven

27 Alfred Grove

OAKLEIGH EAST, Vic., Australia 3166


Our sponsors are very important to the “Spirits of Ansett”. Without their sponsorship dollars the committee would have found it very difficult to have kept the “Spirit” alive let alone have a quality website up and running.





ADELAIDE    S.A    5000

Telephone    08 8233 1676

Email   [email protected]

Jeffrey Tidswell has been financial adviser to one of our committee [Bob Birks] for over 10years and Bob has been pleased with the service he is receiving. If you think that you could do with advice in financial matters then give Jeffrey a call as he will be delighted to hear from you.

All of our sponsors and their details are accessible to you on the website so we will only list them here to save space-

Flarose Pty Ltd                                       Series 567 Rail Video                     Copies & More 

George Forrest Home maintenance        Lasting Impression Photographics 

David Stevenson Electrical Contractor                 Tidswell Financial Services