Ferry Flight has begun - see news page for daily updates


By now, you will have all heard that to avoid our Catalina becoming weather-bound for another six months in Portugal, the ferry crew decided to bring forward their departure to the weekend of 15/16 November because of early snow falls in the Sierra Mountains. This is despite the fact that we were still desperately seeking the funds (approx. $150,000) required to pay for the fuel to assure her passage home.

At the same time, 11th-hour negotiations with a potential major sponsor were underway. These negotiations, if successful, would have seen our Catalina on Australian shores by early December at the latest.  Unfortunately, these negotiations did not succeed and so now it seems likely that our Catalina will become stranded somewhere along the ferry route. On 22 November, the aircraft arrived in Bahrain and at the time of writing, was planning to depart for Muscat on Sunday 23 November. However, we don’t have the funds to get past Bombay.

So it’s now up to you and me to get her home.

Now this may not be as daunting as you think. We’ve noticed that in the three days since the ferry flight commenced the Catalina Flying Memorial Ltd’s website averaged 130 hits per day. So we thought that if these could translate into 130 $1,000 donations, we’d have our Catalina home. This idea was posted on the website and already we’ve had pledges from the following people:

David Cooke, Colin Cool, Gabby Kennard, Greg Piper (MP for Lake Macquarie), Michael Smith, Ray & Kerry Smith (who are donating $5,000), Alan White, Graham White, and a few others to be confirmed.

However, we need help from all of you, not just those who visit the website. So we are posting this appeal to you in the hope that you can help the Cat on her journey home.

Your $1000 means on average 100 miles closer to home.

But donations of any size will be welcome and are tax-deductible. So for an opportunity to make a real difference to the success of this project, please post your cheque to The Catalina Flying Memorial Ltd at the address appearing at the top of this letter. Alternatively, you may pay by direct deposit (please see the following page for details).

Direct Deposit details:

The Catalina Flying Memorial Gift Fund
ANZ Bank
BSB 012 172
Account number: 8370 26202

To ensure you receive your official receipt for taxation purposes, please ensure you either:

  • mail your direct deposit receipt to the above address, or
  • email your direct deposit receipt to

PS: If you ever needed evidence of how desperate things are, just read this little piece of correspondence from Geoff Hazelton - dated 22 November:

Hi All,

We have arrived at Bahrain, in nice time, average speed 130kts GS so the wind helped us. Catalina going well, checking filters here on our lay day tomorrow, and in the absence of word from Dubai, we will depart for Muscat on Sunday morning.


We do not have the funds to get past Bombay. They will require direct payment from Sydney for 800 U.S. gallons. 

Phil, we need you to contact us urgently on Jim's phone.
Jim's credit card has purchased 2 fuel stops, so far. We do not suggest leaving the aircraft anywhere, but if there is no alternative; Colombo would be 1st choice, a big disappointment to all concerned. After Colombo the Indonesian payment to Indo Asia (Rully Dermawun) will get the aircraft to Darwin, this has to be done 5 days before our arrival in Medan (Tuesday next ).

Yesterday we paid US4.58 per LT and 900.00 handling in Luxor so Indonesia is a bit less than that.


Regards Jim / Geoff

Newsletter Edited By : Colin Cool

Nov 23rd 2008

Volume 2 Issue 9

Newsletter Spotlight

  • Request for Help!
  • You and Me
  • $1000 = 100 miles
  • Deposit details
  • Message from Crew


^ The crew in Salamanca, Spain

With the aircraft performing beautifully – the only thing that can stop her now is a lack of money. Your help is desperately sought and will be greatly appreciated!

The flood of donations in the past week has been Fantastic - please forward this to anyone you think might be in a position to help.

If you have any news or comments regarding the website, or newsletter items, please forward to

Editor - Colin Cool

Web Administrator - Jillian Brandon

NEWS: To view past newsletters, view press releases and other news


Catalina Flying Memorial Ltd
ACN 103 492 440
Building 2, Ground Floor
35-41 Waterloo Rd
Macquarie Park NSW 2113