Tyabb Airport upgrades

Tyabb FlypastOver the next few months, Tyabb Airport will be undergoing some significant works to repair and improve the main apron, taxi-ways, drainage and runway lighting. Money for these works was granted through the regional airports development fund – other airports near to Melbourne which have also benefitted significantly from the development fund include Coldstream and Lethbridge.

Tyabb is home to the Peninsula Aero Club (PAC) – a club and school open to anyone interested in flying, whether as a social or flying member. Current PAC membership stands at almost 600. On pretty well any sunny day, families can be seen picnicking on the grass in front of the club house, watching the aircraft taking off and landing. PAC organises the bi-annual Tyabb Airshow, the last of which was held in March 2014, with an attendance of well over 5,000. Plane Crazy Down Under has produced a video of the 2014 Airshow – details and ordering information can be found here: Plane Crazy Tyabb Airshow DVD

The airport is also home to a number of other aviation related industries, including service and maintenance facilities, as well as to Cubcrafters Australia, agents for the Carbon Cub, and of course to Foxbat Australia!

Of particular interest is The Old Aeroplane Company (this is a link to very nice current video), which is based on the western side of the airport. Owned and operated by Judy Pay, The Old Aeroplane Company not only restores and services older aircraft (as well as new ones), it also houses a unique collection of warbirds and other interesting aircraft – here’s a link to a Flickr gallery of some of them: Old Aeroplane Company pictures . You can visit – but phone to check first to ensure they are open: 03 5977 3355. Here’s another article and pictures about the recovery and restoration of a Curtiss P-40F Warhawk, one of the gems of the Old Aeroplane collection.

For those who want to fly in, Tyabb Airport is one of the few regional airports offering both Avgas and 98 Octane Mogas at the bowser. Daily and overnight parking is available.

If you’re visiting come over and visit Foxbat and Cubcrafters at Hangar 11 – the first hangar due south of the PAC club house.

4 thoughts on “Tyabb Airport upgrades

  1. Wow ! I spent a bit of time flying out of Barwon Heads too – at that time the land was owned by a grumpy older farmer by the name of Begg and the only reason he allowed aircraft to use it was because his daughter (Barbara Begg) ran a little school there as the CFI/manager. It used to have one small (I mean 3 m x 3 m) prefab office as the only building – I went on Google Earth and looked at it recently and could not believe it. I am looking forward to spending some time flying around old haunts in Victoria: I worked for 8 years at the marine science labs in Queenscliff and flew up and down the coast a bit – farthest west to Portland and farthest east to Malacoota. Did a bit of aerial seagrass surveying over Westernport.

    Is there any hangar space for rent at Tyabb ?

    Cheers,
    AM

  2. Excellent article – thanks Peter.

    I have a soft spot for Tyabb and the PAC because that is where I flew a C150 VH-EKO on my first solo a somewhat shocking 34 years ago. 17/35 was then a fairly narrow strip of packed dirt and with the wind commonly a westerly off the bay one quickly learnt about crosswind landings. There is also a pleasing element of circularity for me having become a proud Foxbat owner with the home of FB Australia being located at Tyabb.

    The upgrades sound great and it is pleasing to see some federal money going to regional airport infra-structure, especially where is already a strong activity and keen interest by the local community. The “royalties for regions” money has not always been spent so sensibly on airport upgrades – there is at least one over here in the west for which the works done bear no apparent relation to any current or realistically anticipated use of the airfield. It seems to have been done on the “build it and they will come” principle. Not always a bad idea…but it’s been some years now and “they” haven’t come yet from what I can see.

    Cheers,
    AM

    • Hi Andrew – the strip is still quite narrow by GA standards and typically there is still a westerly crosswind on most days. And when it isn’t a westerly, it’s an easterly!. There is a short grass cross-strip but it’s strictly for emergency use only as from the east it brings you in very close to the houses and hangar roofs. At least we can land taildraggers on the grass alongside 17/35.
      PS – I just heard that Barwon Heads Aerodrome – just across Port Philip Bay from Tyabb – has also received close to 2/3rds of a million to bitumen-coat their main runway.

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