In meteorological conditions less than ideal for gliding; the recently completed hangar at the Canterbury Gliding Clubs new airfield at Russell Flat (near Springfield) was officially opened today (14-04-2012). This hangar is roughly 100m long and easily holds twelve fully rigged gliders.
The Canterbury Gliding Club was formed in 1950 and began gliding out of Harewood, but commercial activity forced a move to new site at Burnt Hill (near Ocford). This site was less than ideal being exposed to the Northwesterly winds from the Waimakariri Gorge. Arrangements were then made to be able to operated out of Wigram, but this came to an end with the closure of Wigram, however the Club had established an away base at Hororata and this was used until they were once again forced to move recently.
With the foresight and generosity of Jerry O'Neil, Dick Georgeson and the late Jon Hamilton, land for a new site was acquired and has become what is now the Russell Flat Airfield.
Because of conditions most of the proceeding were held in the hangar, however the cutting of the ribbon and unveiling of the plaque took place externally at the southern end of the hangar.
The Club's fleet was lined up outside the hangar, with private gliders near the side of the airstrip.
Above:- the Club's single seater Rolladen-Schneider LS4-b ZK-GCC2 (c/n 41043) was acquired in August of 2006.
For more serious cross country flying they purchased the Schempp-Hirth Janus Ce ZK-GPB c/n 304) in November of 1994.