Don Pitkin named Pilot of the Year at Hastings Flying Club 1969 presentation dinner

Pilot of the year: Don Pitkin receives the Flying Club shield from Harry Hutchinson, 1969. Photo supplied by Port Macquarie Museum.
Pilot of the year: Don Pitkin receives the Flying Club shield from Harry Hutchinson, 1969. Photo supplied by Port Macquarie Museum.

Pilot of the Year

The Hastings District Flying Club named Don Pitkin Pilot of the Year at a glamorous dinner function at Clifton restaurant on Saturday night.

Fellow club member Harry Hutchison praised the outstanding achievements of Mr Pitkin in gaining his wings under the guidance of chief flying instructor Barrie Abbott.

Highlights of Barrie's flying report were references to another incident-free year of operations and the wide scope of activity which took planes and pilots to many parts of Australia and to islands north of Australia.

All of this was interesting to the Department of Civil Aviation's representative at the dinner. In turn, Russ Evans was also delightfully interesting as guest speaker, leaving no doubt in the minds of all present that aviation was full of adventure and reward - and by all standards extremely safe.

In something like 35,000 take-offs in his own career, so far, Mr Evans said he had never once experienced engine failure. Complimenting the local club on its incident-free record over the years, Mr Evans said this was a creditable reflection on pilot ability and discipline and the skill and devotion of their flying instructor, Barrie Abbott.

The Flying Club's first instructor, Joe Lee, now a test pilot with Qantas, had the pleasant duty of presenting wings to four newly pledged pilots - Jack Buchanan, Don Pitkin, Dr A. Jones and Allen Collins.

Senior Citizens Centre

One of the most gratifying aspects of the recently opened Senior Citizens Centre in Port Macquarie is the number of new-found friendships already being cemented.

Senior Citizen Centre: Members listen to an address by patron Dr McLaren in the newly refurbished rooms, 1969.

Senior Citizen Centre: Members listen to an address by patron Dr McLaren in the newly refurbished rooms, 1969.

Mr J. Hoskins, secretary of the Senior Citizens Centre committee, said yesterday it was already noticeable the centre was bringing together numbers of elderly citizens. When the first meeting opened in the reconstructed and refurnished premises of the old library on Tuesday afternoon, the financial membership figure stood at 200, and 80 of these - 14 men and 66 women - were present. Several more members paid their subs and increased the number beyond 200 after the meeting.

Mr F. Fulloon was elected president and Mr J. Hoskins is secretary. Tuesday's meeting also appointed a catering and entertainment committee which will, in due course, be functioning.

The 80 people were all comfortably seated in their carpeted club-room, and off it, the tidy kitchen presented a readiness for the afternoon tea which followed the meeting. The club rooms are open from 10am until to 4pm each day (except Sundays).

Half an inch the difference

An application by D. Olsen & Co for a certificate of compliance with respect to a block of flats at the corner of William and Lord Streets, was granted by the municipal council at its meeting on Tuesday night.

Alderman Matesich voted against the certificate being granted. The building does not comply with the Local Government Act in that the wall on the third floor stands 8' 11 1/2" from the side boundary (statutory requirement iss 9').

Ald Boardman moved council approve the application as the anomaly was only half an inch. The motion was carried with only Ald Matesich voting against it.

This story Hastings Flying Club pilot of the year 1969 first appeared on Port Macquarie News.

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