Governor Flew Back

1927 His Excellency Sir Tom Bridges this morning flew from Kangaroo Island to Woodville Aerodrome in the biplane of Capt. H. C. Miller. The flight was made in 45 minutes. Capt. Miller yesterday flew to the Island from the mainland, being the first aviator to do so. With the Governor on board he left Kingscote at 7 o'clock this morning on the return trip, when the visibility was excellent and a fine vista could be seen from aloft for scores of miles in all directions. Sir Tom Bridges brought back with him some fish that were caught at Kingscote this morning. He enjoyed them for his breakfast.

FROM KANGAROO ISLAND (1927, January 11). News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), p. 13 (HOME EDITION).


1927 Our Kingscote correspondent telegraphed, as follows on Tuesday:— Kangaroo Island was connected up with the airways of Australia on Monday, when Capt. Miller landed here at 11 am. The flying occupied less than an hour. Many residents made a trip aloft to view the island. Messrs. McKinnon and A. Anderson made the first flight, and Mrs. R. J. Cook was the first lady passenger. Capt. Miller stated that the coastline made the flying very attractive. His Excellency the Governor (Sir Tom Bridges) left by 'plane for Adelaide at 6.40 a.m. to-day.

HEALTH AND THE CHILD. (1927, January 12). The Register (Adelaide, SA : 1901 - 1929), p. 8. Retrieved August 6, 2019, from


Sixty Minutes' Journey

1927 Capt. Miller, the well-known aviator, left Albert Park aerodrome this morning at 9.45 to fly to Kingscote, Kangaroo island. Capt. Miller had as passenger Mr. G. D. Bewick, [sic] [Garibaldi David Buick] of Kingscote, to whom goes the honor of being the first passenger to be conveyed by air from the mainland to Kangaroo Island. Sir Tom Bridges (Governor) has flown from the island to the mainland. The services of Capt. Miller reduce the time between Adelaide and Kingscote from about eight hours taken by boats to one hour.

KANGAROO ISLAND BY AIR (1927, February 12). The Mail (Adelaide, SA : 1912 - 1954), p. 1. Retrieved August 5, 2019, from

A group of people assembled for the visit of a bi-plane. The aircraft is being refuelled with a funnel, and fuel from a can. This is possibly the first visit of a plane to Penneshaw, Kangaroo Island in 1928. SLSA B 70832-12


1930 Holiday trips by air to Victor Harbor and Kangaroo Island can be arranged with the Commercial Aviation Company, also flights to any part of the State or Commonwealth on the shortest notice. Capt. H. C. Miller is prepared to give flying instructions.

TRIPS BY AIR (1930, November 27). News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), p. 14 (HOME EDITION). Retrieved August 6, 2019, from

Growing up on Kangaroo Island Facebook Group - Dean Wiles. The old airstrip just out of Kingscote. Crashed twice 1931, 1935. From a private collection on island. — with Patrick Crowther.

Air Services

1935. With a nominal capital of £250,000 a company has been formed in Adelaide, to be known as Adelaide Airways Limited, to run services within the State. The Adelaide Steamship Company is the manager of the new company. It is announced that the services will be begun with two Monospar Jubilee Model ST25 aeroplanes, each of which will be equipped with two Pobjoy Niagara engines, capable of a cruising speed of 130 miles an hour. These machines have been thoroughly tested and proved by leading airway services and experts in the United Kingdom, and should be available in Adelaide in about three months' time. The aeroplanes are well equipped, comfortably furnished, and will seat four passengers, in addition to the pilot. It is the intention of the company to begin services from Adelaide to Port Lincoln, Yorke Peninsula, and Kangaroo Island, and the 'planes will be available for hire to country centres where suitable aerodromes are provided.

ADELAIDE (1935, July 20). The Australasian (Melbourne, Vic. : 1864 - 1946), p. 9. Retrieved August 6, 2019, from

First Mail 'plane to Kangaroo Island - 10 April 1937. SLSA B 18216.

1937 Beginning from Monday, Australian National Airways will operate a different service to Kangaroo Island each day. The company's Scion will be replaced by a Dragon, and later it is expected that that plane will be replaced by a Dragon Rapide. Kingscote will in future be the terminal point at Kangaroo Island, and no intermediate stops will be made at Penneshaw and American River, as previously. Penneshaw and American River traffic — mail and passenger — will be catered for with a motor car service that will meet each plane on its arrival from Parafield. Incidentally, the Kangaroo Island service was the first air mail route in Australia that carried all mail matter without surcharge Other routes carried first-class mail matter, but the Kangaroo Island service catered for all classes of mail.

The Week At Parafield —And Elsewhere (1937, June 25). The Advertiser (Adelaide, SA : 1931 - 1954), p. 21.

1937. Mail plane. A researcher has provided the following information: 'The aircraft is a Short Scion II six passenger airliner belonging to Adelaide Airways. Construction Number S.791. It was in the purple and gold colour scheme of the company. Later it briefly operated on floats out of the Brisbane River. It was broken up in the late 1940s'. SLSA B 23953.

Mail plane. 1937. SLSA 23954

View of a crashed aeroplane - Mail 'Plane. 1938. SLSA B 36750.

View of a crashed aeroplane - Mail 'Plane. 1938. B 36751.

View of a crashed aeroplane - Mail 'Plane. A researcher has provided the following information: "The aircraft is a DH89A eight passenger airliner. It is a De Haviland Dragon Rapide registered as VH-UXT to Australian National Airways Pty Ltd Construction Number 6346. It was named 'Mundoora'. The crash occurred on landing on 5 February 1938. Captain B. Ernie Annear and his four passengers were uninjured. The aircraft was briefly used by the RAAF as A33-4 but back in civilian use in 1943 it had a far more serious crash in Wynyard. There were no injuries, but the aircraft was struck off the register."

SLSA B 36752

See also: Plane Damaged In K.I. Landing Mishap (1938, February 5). The Mail (Adelaide, SA : 1912 - 1954), p. 2.

Passengers in the Kangaroo Island mail plane Mundoora were unhurt when the plane, landing at Kingscote about 1.15 a.m. [sic] today, was tilted by a gust of wind and damaged. The plane was about to land over the rise on the edge of the aerodrome when it was thrown off balance by a squall. It came down on one wheel, which collapsed, and the plane was thrown down on to the port wing. Slewing round, the plane came to rest with its tail in the air. The undercarriage, port propeller, and port wing were badly damaged. The cabin was slightly damaged, but the passengers — Messrs. A. J. Jones, of Kingscote, R. C. Welch, of Adelaide, R. Taylor, of Adelaide, and Mrs. K. Burt, of Adelaide— and the pilot, Capt. Annear, escaped injury. "We felt only a jar as the plane landed," said Mr. Jones. A relief plane left Parafield this afternoon and made two trips to Kings cote to pick up return passengers and mail.

Meeting of Residents.

1939 On Monday evening June 19th a meeting of residents of the town and district was held in the Reading Room, to discuss the matter of applying to the Commonwealth Government for a subsidy for the maintenance of an Air Service to Kangaroo Island. Mr R. McKinnon presided, and Mr D. Davidson carried out the duties of Secretary. The Chairman of the District Council (Cr. M. Smith) informed the meeting that he had forwarded a letter to the Minister for Civil Aviation, requesting that a subsidy be granted for the maintenance of an Air Service to K.I. It was decided that a letter be sent to the Minister from the meeting to support of the letter sent by the Chairman on behalf of the District Council. The motion being moved by Dr. F. E. Welch and seconded by Mr T. D. Davidson. It was also decided to request the Federal and State Members for the district to give this matter their support. An apology was received from Mrs D. R. Lade for her absence.

[A telegram has been received from Mr A. G. Cameron M.H.R. stating that he would do his best to push the matter of a subsidy and would advise the Chairman of the meeting of the result.]

Meeting of Residents. (1939, June 23). The Kangaroo Island Courier (Kingscote, SA : 1907 - 1951), p. 2. Retrieved August 6, 2019, from

Air lift of sheep from Kangaroo Island by Bristol Freighter. 1951. SLSA B 18217

Fat Sheep By Air

1951. An A.N.A. Bristol Freighter last month landed at Kangaroo Island to pick up 120 sheep for the Adelaide market. Average weight of the sheep was about 100-lb. The animals were the first sheep over to be flown from Kangaroo Island, which is about 90 miles by air from Adelaide. They were landed at Parafield airport and walked about a mile to the abattoir. Many of Kangaroo Island's farmers are ex soldiers, and Mr. I. H. Grabowsky, Planning and Development Manager of A.N.A, said his company was trying to help them to stock their properties and to transport their fat sheep to the Adelaide market. With a second deck fitted, he said, the Bristol freighter could carry 100 sheep.

AVIATION (1951, July 6). The Farmer and Settler (Sydney, NSW : 1906 - 1955), p. 11. Retrieved August 6, 2019, from
AIRLIFT WILL INCREASE LAMB MARKET PRICE (1951, October 13). News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), p. 12.
Airline men on KI flying fishing trip (1952, September 18). News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), p. 3.

Port Adelaide Wharf Strike

Goods flown to island

1954 Flour, beer, and timber have been specially flown to Kangaroo Island this week to overcome shortages caused by the wharf strike. A Guinea Airways spokes man said today seven extra freight services in DC3 aircraft had been made this week between Para field and Kingscote. Three charter flights had taken sheep to the island and four others had carried flour, beer, timber, and general freight. On each return flight sheep had been brought from the island.

PORT WHARFMEN VOTE MONDAY (1954, November 13). News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), p. 3.

Convair Metropolitan 440

Kingscote Airport

A plaque commemorates the extensions to the Kingscote airport and the inaugural flight of an Airlines of South Australia aircraft to Kangaroo Island.


"This plaque was officially unveiled by Dr. A. J. Forbes, M.H.R., Member for Barker, December 14th. 1960.

Commemorating extensions to the airstrip at Kingscote Airport and the inaugural flight of an Airlines of South Australia Convair Metropolitan 440 aircraft to Kangaroo Island."

The Airlines of South Australia’s Convair Metropolitan 440 was VH-BZN City of Adelaide. It was built in 1957 and did the inaugural KI flight for the type on 13 December 1960. ASA sold in in 1973 after more than 13,000 hours. It was scrapped in Bangkok in 1981. There is a publicity shot in Hope Cottage.

- Chris Ward
See also

DC3 Cygnet River Aerodrome c.1952

Flying Governor Took Over Plane (1953, November 18). Brisbane Telegraph (Qld. : 1948 - 1954), p. 11 (LAST RACE).


1953 KINGSCOTE, Monday: The Governor, Sir Robert George, took the controls of the Guinea Airways DC3 in which he flew to Kangaroo Island today (exclusive picture above). He flew the airliner the whole way, and put it down in a perfect landing at Kingscote Airport. Sir Robert George is an Air Vice-Marshal in the RAF. There were 24 passengers in the plane. Sir Robert, who today begins an official tour of Kangaroo Island, entered the pilot's cabin shortly after the DC3 took off from Parafield. Officials of the welcoming committee at Kingscote were surprised when their first sight of the Governor was through a window in the nose of the plane as he taxied it up to the tarmac. Capt. N. S. Buckley, captain of the DC3, said afterwards it had been flown by an expert. "Sir Robert does not get much flying experience these days, but he is as good a pilot as I have seen," he said. After the Governor had left the plane he met the chairman of the district council Cr. A. S G. Barrett, and the town clerk, Mr Barreia. Accompanied by Capt. Peter Samuel, ADC, the Governor then attended a civic reception and council luncheon.

GOVERNOR FLIES PLANE TO KI (1953, November 16). News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), p. 1.
Repairs to airliner (1966, January 18). The Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995), p. 16.