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In late October 2014, over 40 Donvale Hill Probus members spent a week, or in some cases more, at the Big4 Caravan Park at Swan Hill.

There were many good memories, including David Ellis negotiating excellent riverside spots for the caravans, a cruise on a paddle boat, a visit to Lake Boga (see Peter Podolak's article below) and some nice walks, mainly along the river Murray.

John Blake organised most of the activities and was rewarded by catching (and subsequently returning to the river) a large Murray cod.

one of the pleasant walks


In the sun at the back of the paddle boat


                                 Lake Boga, CATALINA – Flying Boat Museum.

On Monday 20th October, 36 members of the CACEN (Caravan And Cabin Enlightened Nomads) Group visited the Lake Boga Flying Boat Museum, home of the A24-30 Catalina Flying Boat, only one of four still remaining in Australia.
The tour started with an introduction by Graeme Benlow, a volunteer at the museum, followed by a 20 minute film in the theatrette.
After the Japanese attacked Broome on March 3rd 1942, Lake Boga was selected as the preferred site for the No. 1 RAAF Flying Boat Repair Depot. For obvious reasons, the Original Order to develop Lake Boga as the service and repair facility was marked "TOP SECRET". The historical significance and mystique associated with the clandestine operations of the Catalina Flying Boat and the Lake Boga repair Depot provides an opportunity for the engaging Museum.
Lake Boga saw its first flying Boat in July 1942 when a quantity of stores and equipment was flown in from Rathmines in NSW. Special sections were dedicated to the United States of America and Netherlands aircraft and crew who visited Lake Boga during WW2. They were very popular with the locals and were made most welcome when visiting their homes.
There were 416 Aircraft serviced at the Depot, ranging from repair of Operational Damage to Complete Overhaul. The aircraft serviced included: Catalinas, Dorniers, Martin Mariners, Kingfishers and Sandilands.
As well as the main Hanger and Display Centre of the Museum attraction, there is an Underground Communications Bunker. It replicates living quarters as well as Secret Communications equipment adding to the educational trip into our recent history.
Lake Boga is situated on Lakeside Drive, off Murray Valley Highway, 16 Km South of Swan Hill.

Peter Podolak

Inside the museum