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Exhibitions celebrate South Ayrshire's Aviation Heritage

passport 400

To coincide with the International Ayr Show - Festival of Flight, taking place at Ayr shore front this weekend (8 - 10 September), two aviation exhibitions will be on display in Ayr town centre featuring rarely seen artefacts and images.

The Cutty Sark at the bottom of Ayr High Street is hosting an exhibition celebrating "South Ayrshire's Aviation Pioneers" and is based around four fascinating stories of local aviators:

·        Elsie Mackay, a Hollywood actress and aviator from Ballantrae who sadly lost her life in 1928 while attempting to be the first woman to fly across the Atlantic.

·        David Fowler McIntyre, the first pilot to fly over Mount Everest and founder of Prestwick Airport.

·        The Ayrshire teenage boys who applied to join the Air Training Corps amidst World War II.

·        The pioneering flights of 1913 over Ayrshire that transformed military observation.

Exhibits on display from Ayrshire Archives include DF McIntyre's passport and original application letters from the young men applying to the ATC. There will also be a selection of aircraft themed work from local artists.

The nearby Grain Exchange is offering visitors the chance to take a brief walk through time with original images showcasing the history of Prestwick Airport. Images on display from the Council's Local History Collections include the four-engined Super Handley Page of 1913, aircraft of the war years and onward, through to the days of Concorde. Many of these seldom seem images remain under copyright of The Imperial War Museum, London.

South Ayrshire Council's Director of Strategic Change and Communities, Jane Bradley said:

"Ayrshire has a strong aviation heritage and what better time to celebrate that than during the International Ayr Show - Festival of Flight. We are very fortunate to have such interesting items in our collections and I would encourage all those with an interest in aviation to pop into the exhibitions over the weekend and experience a bit of history."

Both exhibits will be on display from Friday 8 - Sunday 10 September. Opening times for The Cutty Sark and The Grain Exchange are:  Friday and Saturday 10am- 4pm, Sunday 12 noon - 4pm.