The Royal Aero Club of Western Australia is the oldest flying training club in WA. It was incorporated in August 1929 as the Aero Club of Australia (W.A. Branch) Inc. and first flew its aircraft from Maylands Aerodrome in April 1930. On that date, the Club officially took over training from Perth Flying School with two de Havilland DH.60 Moth aircraft donated by the Federal Government. In 1934, the name was changed to Aero Club of Western Australia and in 1936, the Royal prefix was added, changing the name to the Royal Aero Club of Western Australia Inc. Prior to World War Two, the Club held several air carnivals, where RAAF aircraft participated, and the events drew thousands of visitors to Maylands.
By September 1939, the Club had flown over 14,500 hours and the fleet had grown to six aircraft. During that time, many hundreds of pilots had been trained to both private and commercial standard. The Club ceased operations during World War Two when its aircraft were impressed into service with the RAAF, but following the end of the war in 1945 the Club was re-established at Maylands and in the next few years it became the dominant flying training and charter operator in WA.
In post-war years, the Club progressively improved its fleet of aircraft, stepping from de Havilland Tiger Moths to de Havilland Chipmunks and then to Cessna aircraft; the first of which was delivered in 1958. The Club moved its operation from Maylands to Guildford Aerodrome (Perth International Airport) in 1959, and then to Jandakot Airport in 1965.
Author: Mervyn W. Prime
Members of Royal Aero Club with the latest acquisition, a Hornet Moth. Bob Giles, wearing flying helmet, a former well-known secretary and president of the Club.
State Library of Western Australia 022731PD
Several people watch as a de Havilland DH.60G Gypsy Moth biplane is refuelled at
Maylands Aerodrome. State Library of Western Australia 283060PD
Club History Milestones
1919: Commenced flying at Maylands as the WA Section of the Aero Club of Australia.
1929: Registered as an incorporated body.
1934: Became the Aero Club of Western Australia (inc).
1937: Granted a Royal Charter and became the Royal Aero Club of Western Australia (inc).
1939/40: Trained RAAF pilots.
1940/45: Assets ceded to the RAAF for the duration.
1945: Club activities recommence.
1959: Temporary move to Perth Airport.
1965: Move to newly established Jandakot Airport.
1984: Est. Murrayfield Airport, 10 kms east of Mandurah.
2008: Purchased the West Australian Aviation College.