On tuesday 22 may the 4 of us left via Schiphol for Dublin Ireland to visit Baldonnel which is the homebase for the Irish Aircorps.The IAC had always been high on our wishlist because it is fairly small airforce and they are not much seen around Europe. Cris got in contact with the IAC and a visit was arranged for the 4 of us somewhere in may and it had to be a wednesday because the IAC does guided tours on those days. We all got together and the date was set for the 23rd of may to visit Baldonnel. Harry arranged for airlinetickets and Elmar and I came along for the ride.

On the day itself it was arranged that we were allowed to come on base before flight operations started.The day was well organized and our guide for the day(Kelvin Duffy) was very nice guy who formerly had flown as a winchoperator on various types. He told us a lot about the history of the IAC and showed us every hangar on the airfield including the basechapel which was recently renovated and has special painted glass which refer to the history of the IAC.

We also visited the museum who is also located on the airfield. The museum is home to several types of aircraft which flew for the IAC. Sadly not all in good shape but ellswhere on base they are restoring aircraft for the museum in Dublin.Just to give an example of the types that have gone in the last few years are the fouga CM170,marchetti SF260,gazelle SA342 and the Dauphin SA365 and by the end of this year another type will have left namely the Allouette III. This workhorse will fly it last flight somewhere in august of this year after a servicelife of 44 years with the IAC. 

For all the types that have left new ones have arrived but not as many as with the old ones. Newcommers are the EC135,AW139 and the PC9. All in all a very nice selection of aircraft to fly with. I want to thank everybody from the IAC who has made this visit possible and hope to see you again!!!


Jan Eenling© 2006-2010