The Nhill Aerodrome will come alive tomorrow with the sound of engines at the Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre’s ‘Start Up Day’.

The locally built Avro Anson will be the main feature of the day, but will be featured alongside the Wirraway, a Tiger Moth, and other engines of all shapes and sizes.

Restoration work on the World War Two Avro Anson has been progressing for eleven years, and while not quite finished, the two engines on the aeroplane are now in working order and ready to be started up.

Rob Lynch, president of the Nhill Aviation Heritage Centre (NAHC), said that it will be a memorable day.

“When some of us saw the Avro Anson pieces behind Graham Drage’s shed at Lah back in 2009 we thought they looked like useless junk. Mike Kingwill, Wimpey Reichelt and Len Creek have done an amazing job to get the plane to this stage,” he said.

Some of the engines require blowtorches, crank handles and cartridges to start them, with the line-up including a Southern Cross mobile generator similar to the one used for floodlighting at the aerodrome during World War Two, a Lanz Bulldog tractor, and vintage control-line model aircraft.

The NAHC’s extensive collection of memorabilia from the Nhill RAAF Base days will be on display in the Ahrens Hanger, along with the Link Trainer, a prototype flight simulator.

Other significant items on display include Nhill’s first locally-owned aircraft, a de Soutter, and the propeller from the second Australian-built aeroplane. This aircraft was constructed in a straw shed by a young farmer from Pella, near Rainbow, during the 1920s.

Engines will be started at various intervals during the day so that visitors can take in the whole range. The first engine will start up at 10 am, with the program concluding at 4 pm.

Entry cost will be $15, which includes access to the Ahrens Hanger, with free entry for children and students. A barbeque and drinks will be available
Start Up Times

Tigermoth: 10am & 1:30pm
Wirraway: 10:30am & 2pm
Avro Anson: 12noon & 3pm