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22 August 2013
Catalina gives aerial display over Firth

This afternoon watchers on both sides of the Cromarty Firth enjoyed a flying display by this historic Catalina G-PBYA, the oldest airworthy amphibian plane still flying in the UK.

The flight over the Firth formed part of a 100th anniversary commemoration of the Circuit of Britain Race sponsored by The Daily Mail in 1913. The challenge was to fly around Britain in a waterplane, and the only entrant was the Australian Harry Hawker who flew over 1000 miles before crashing his Sopwith Waterplane north of Dublin.

Today's Catalina G-PBYA was built in Canada in 1943 and served with the Royal Canadian Air Force until 1961. After many years of use as a fire bomber in Canada and France it was flown to the UK in 2004 and is now based in the Imperial War Museum in Duxford.