Day 3 of our Portrush aircraft profile is the Consolidated PBY Catalina G-PBYA ‘Miss Pick-up’ run by the Plane Sailing Air Displays Limited who are based out of Duxford, England.
The Consolidated PBY Catalina is an American flying boat, and later an amphibious aircraft of the 1930s and 1940s produced by Consolidated Aircraft.
The Catalina was one of the most widely used seaplanes of World War II. Catalinas served with every branch of the United States Armed Forces and in the air forces and navies of many other nations.
During World War II, PBYs were used in anti-submarine warfare, patrol bombing, convoy escorts, search and rescue missions.
G-PBYA – The aircraft that will fly in Portrush was originally ordered for the Royal Canadian Air Force as a Canso. An amphibian, equivalent to the US Navy PBY-5A. It was built by Canadian Vickers at Cartierville, Quebec and was allocated their constructors number CV-283 before adopting the RCAF serial 11005. It was taken on charge by the air force on 27 October 1943 and initially saw service with 9 Squadron.
After the war she entered a period of storage at Moose Jaw before being converted to a freighter in 1948. Since then she has changed hands quite a few times working as a freighter and even as a water bomber in the Province of Saskatchewan, Canada.
In 2004 she was bought by ‘Plane Sailing’ and brought to Duxford and in November of 2004 her registry was changed from C-FNJF to G-PBYA.
The Catalina is operated by Plane Sailing Air Displays Limited on behalf of Catalina Aircraft Limited which is made up of a number of shareholders. The enterprise is supported by its own ‘fan club’ – The Catalina Society. The Catalina last displayed in Portrush in 2014.
We look forward to her making her return to Portrush! (Photo and information from Catalina Society Website )