Warbird flying – UK

Matt Dearden

English born professional pilot, writer, blogger and columnist. Currently flying the Pilatus PC-6 Turbo Porter in Papua, Indonesia.

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6 Responses

  1. Geoff Chennells says:

    From a Catalina to a Cub ???!!! Fan-F-tastic!!! Well done Matt … just LOVE your blog!

  2. James Beegan says:

    Matt, I think it’s awesome you got your hands on a PBY & got to enjoy the Cub, fond memories for me in my teen years of flying with both those planes. It was in the early days of my “problem”, I was and still am a flight junkie, even though it’s been 30 years of aviation for me, I’m still “that kid”. I was treated to flying in Cubs through friends & a local at my hometown airport, nothing like that little plane, second, I was treated to a ride in a Catalina, my best friend’s grandfather flew them in the Pacific Theatre during WWII & was fortunate to still fly one with a handful of WWII aviators that had one at the time flying it all over to various air shows in the U.S.. I’ll never forget it, it was the loudest, creakiest thing I’d flown in at that point. Smiling from ear to ear I was in heaven. I enjoyed many memories and conversations specific to that aircraft & the roles it fulfilled in its prime. You lucky dog, I’m happy for you. Sails to the wind my friend!

  3. Recently had the great opportunity to fly on PBY-5A as a passenger here in The Netherlands, a water landing was included, wonderful experience!

  4. Craig Bailey says:

    That is quite a nice looking PBY. There was one at the Sonoma County Airport for quite a few years. Someone in Sweden purchased it. Blue skies.

  5. John Richard says:

    Only recently followed you on Twitter after I noticed your follow of Rathmines. Was interested in your bush pilot adventures just as an interest because of the area. Then I finally had a look at your blog today, and am not half envious! Piloting ‘Plane Sailing’! I am only trying to ‘bust’ a leg to get over to see her. David Legg has been of assistance over years to us, and follow there progress continually. Can you tell me the identity of the Cat you dived on up North? Would like to offer you a fly in our PBY when restored, but unfortunately, she will only be static.

    • Matt Dearden says:

      Hi John,

      David is an absolute fount of knowledge when it comes to Catalinas. What he doesn’t know about them probably isn’t worth knowing! The Cat I’m a part of is technically a 1943 Canso built for the Royal Canadian Air Force and saw service during WWII. She performed various roles after the war and our group purchased her in 2004 and then set about repainting her in the USAAF colours of the 8th Air Force 5th Emergency Rescue Squadron based at Halesworth, Suffolk in the UK. She’s registered as G-PBYA in the UK and is based at Duxford. There’s plenty more information on our website here: http://www.catalina.org.uk/our-catalina-g-pbya/

      I would love to come over and take a look at “Our Girl” some day! I follow the progress on your website – you’ve certainly got your work cut out and I wish you all the best getting her back together again.

      Cheers

      Matt