Connellan / Connair

IATA Code: -

ICAO Code: -

Known As: Connair

Full Name: Connair Pty Ltd

Country: Australia

Call sign: -




Objects in Collection







Brief History


Connair Pty Ltd, formerly Connellan Airways Pty Ltd was established by Edward J. Connellan
(1912-1983) in 1939.

The airline was the principal airline conducting flights within the Northern Territory.
It pioneered many routes including the commencement of regular flights to Uluru (Ayers Rock) in 1959.

The airline's name was changed to Connair in 1970 becoming a public company restricted access to ready sources of credit for purchase of newer and larger equipment. Connair started to face some difficult times. The Royal Flying Doctor Service acquired two Connellan aircraft for its own use in 1965 and ceased using company pilots in 1973.

The effects of Cyclone Tracy at Christmas 1974 disrupted schedules, although the company escaped damage to staff or aircraft and played a part in Darwin’s relief.

Then Connair lost its `plum’ route from Alice Springs to Mount Isa and Cairns, Queensland, following a pilots’ strike in September 1976.

 The biggest setback was the death of Connellan’s eldest son, Roger when a former employee deliberately crashed an aeroplane into Connair’s offices at Alice Springs in January 1977.

Connellan had groomed Roger as his successor and was forced to increase his involvement in airline management again, although he had been treated for cancer.

Connair received permission to become a regional airline in September 1977, but it remained handicapped by its lack of capital.

 This ultimately persuaded Connellan to sell his company to East-West Airlines Ltd in March 1980.


 ? - 1943 Survey and Transport Co
1943 - 1970 Connellan Airways Ltd
1970 - 1980 Connair Pty Ltd
1980 - 1981 Northern Airlines (Operations) Ltd

Please contact me if you know more about this airline.

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