18 C
Byron Shire
May 8, 2021

Evans Head museum work praised

Latest News

Join Clarkes Beach paddle out this weekend to stop massive oil and gas field project

Hundreds of local surfers and water-lovers will paddle out at Clarke’s Beach over the weekend to protest against a massive oil and gas field proposed for the NSW coast.

Other News

19-yr-old charged after alleged Mercedes joy ride in Tweed shire

A 19-year-old Tweed Heads South man faces a string of charges related to car theft on the Northern Rivers.

Wanted: Bangalow and Byron ‘Induzzy’ reps for town projects

Residents of Bangalow and the Byron Arts and Industry Estate are invited to apply for positions on the Byron Shire Council’s Place Planning Collective

Search for a home

Jules Claydon, Ocean Shores I helped a friend move to a new rental property last week, relieved that a stressful...

Board defends its management of Mullum Rural Co-op

The issue of potential fraud and financial mismanagement was a key part of the response from Mullumbimby Rural Co-op...

Humans suck

Hannah Grace, Ocean Shores I heard on the local news, like, this afternoon (April 20), that 370+ kilos of tuna...

Man dead after boat capsizes near Yamba

Police say a man has died and a second has been taken to hospital after a boat capsized south of Yamba this morning.

Unfortunately the person labelled ‘Jack Bell’ in the picture published in Echonetdaily on Monday, 26 August, is not Jack. Rather he is WWII vet Jim Flattely, who served at Evans Head during the war as ground crew repairing aircraft etc.

Jim can turn his hand to anything. He built a merry-go-round out of aircraft parts that was used for many years to raise funds for charity. It was a regular fixture at Evans Head over the summer holidays. Part of that merry-go-round has been donated to the Evans Head Living Museum.

Jim used to fix Page MP Janelle Saffin’s VW and she reminisced with him on the day about that connection.

Jim is a very strong supporter of the Evans Head Living Museum and was delighted with the restoration of the one remaining Bellman hangar, the last of 17 that were there during the war.

For the record, the Evans Head Memorial Aerodrome was listed on the NSW State Heritage Register in November 2002 following announcement by the NSW state government at a Cabinet meeting at Evans Head on 30 April earlier that year, not 2005 as stated by others at the opening.

The listing followed an application by the community-based Evans Head Memorial Aerodrome Committee in 2000 that was refused support by Richmond Valley Council.

That same committee pushed for many years to have the Bellman hangar restored but again Council wouldn’t provide any funds to undertake the work, even though it had made millions out of the sale of aerodrome land without the necessary permission of the federal government.

In 2005 the Evans Head Memorial Aerodrome Committee (EMAC) put forward a comprehensive plan for the future of the aerodrome that included an air park, heritage walk, specialist hotel accommodation, aviation businesses and appropriate uses of the Bellman.

The plan was completely ignored by Richmond Valley Council, which at that time gave the runaround to air park proponent Bill Finlen, who had also proposed an air park as early as December 2002.

EMAC also restored the very popular Great Eastern Fly-In at the aerodrome and supported the Evans Head Living Museum’s 70th Anniversary of the RAAF at Evans Head attended by the governor-general and her husband. Richmond Valley charged the community for use of the aerodrome for the occasion!

It was disappointing to see that no recognition whatsoever was given to the vision, foresight and hard work of the EMAC and the earlier interventions of other members of the community, including  Halden Boyd and Bob Maiden at the opening.

Without that work and the comprehensive support of the World War II vets under the leadership of WAAAF Jean Haughton James, author of Wings at War: The RAAF At Evans Head 1939–1945, and the Evans Head Living Museum, none of what has happened recently would have occurred.

Council would have had its way and carved up the aerodrome for housing.

Dr Richard Gates, president Evans Head Memorial Aerodrome Committee and the Evans Head Living Museum

(Editor’s note: The correct caption has now been published in the Echonetdaily report.)


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Man dead after boat capsizes near Yamba

Police say a man has died and a second has been taken to hospital after a boat capsized south of Yamba this morning.

Jonson Street bus shelter gone and an era ended

Byron Shire Council says that the wooden bus shelter on Jonson Street outside the Byron Visitors Centre is being removed today with all bus services operating from the new bus interchange on Butler Street in Byron Bay

Upside down river

Tim Harrington, Lennox Head Letter contributor Richard White (letters 21/4/21) quite correctly identifies the Richmond River as an ‘upside down river’ and nowhere is this more...

Ballina Dragons’ great results at Urunga

The Ballina Dragon Boat Racing Club is a group of paddling people from all walks of life who enjoy being out on the water having fun and keeping fit.