Wings on the River tells the colourful story of flying boats from Brisbane’s unique viewpoint. Flying boats represented comfort and safety in reaching distant and exotic places across the sea, and Brisbane was on the doorstep of flying boat travel for more than fifty years. Wings on the River traces the whole flying boat era in Australia through its many changes, its triumphs and adversities, including:
• Pioneering flights between the wars by overseas and local flying boats alighting in the heart of the city;
• Qantas flying boats on the legendary Empire Air Mail route to Britain flying passengers in unprecedented luxury;
• Wartime US Navy flying boat services across the Pacific to General MacArthur’s headquarters in Brisbane;
• Barrier Reef Airways, Queensland’s own flying boat airline, bringing Great Barrier Reef resorts closer to interstate tourists;
• The controversy about flying boats using the Brisbane River, and the dramatic accidents which forced them to leave;
• The story of Redland Bay’s water airport and its little-known service over two decades.