Flightfest in Dublin

Sadly, some people must think that, like their IKEA furniture, when a buggy is unpacked and assembled, it must not be folded away as on the DART to Flightfest yesterday, there seemed to be as many unfolded buggies on the DART as there were people.

As trains from both Northside and Southside alighted at Connolly Station, with the lack of organisation, it took around ten minutes to leave the platform, but once I was off the platform, I was rolling.

I decided my best viewpoint, according to the assigned viewing areas, would be at AIB Bank Centre at the corner of Butt Bridge, that way I should have been able to see the planes coming down the Liffey and turning towards the southside, so you can see two profiles of the planes; head on and side on.

At Butt Bridge, people were being turned back to walk up the LUAS Line.  As far as I know there was no previous suggestion that you couldn’t view at the AIB Bank Centre.  The first available place to turn towards the Liffey was Commons Street, which took people towards Citibank on the corner.  There didn’t seem enough organisation before the event, but a lot at the event.  That said, I was happy where I was as I stayed at Citibank.  It was as good a place as any.

The flypast was a wonderful idea, but I have one more complaint (after this, I’ll complain no more, I hope).  As the planes flew by, there were nice photo opportunities for shooting the planes head on, but not at side on, unfortunately.  There was a nice mix of commercial, private, Air Corps and naval aircraft.  As my camera is currently inoperable, I didn’t take many photos, but did get the odd photo with my phone.

Later on I did manage to get to the other side of the Liffey to meet my sister, Áine, her husband Richard, and my favourite niece, Beth at Grand Canal Dock – a more advantageous spot as it was possible to take some of photos of the aircraft side on.

The people who I asked what their favourite was, said to me Airbus A380,


To me, my favourite was the Boeing B-17 (Sally B) as I love the drone of its four propellered engines. I may have seen her before, but she always has a place in my heart.  Plus, it was the one plane on display which is a film star.  This particular plane was in Memphis Belle.

Another plane which has a place in my heart is the Avro Vulcan which I had the pleasure of seeing in Wroughton, near Swindon, many years ago.  Unfortunately it couldn’t make it due to fuelling issues, but if you check my Flickr account, you can see photos I took of the plane and some of the aircraft at Flightfest.

Despite my protestations, it was an enjoyable day.

Remembering 9/11

11th September 2001, I was at a FÁS training course in Baldoyle, Dublin learning HTML.

Towards the end of the FÁS working day, the course lecturer announced in a matter of a fact way that a plane had hit the World Trade Center.  It sparked a small conversation amongst my fellow students and suggested that it was probably a small aircraft like a Cessna.

As we were going home on the DART, not much more was said about the incident.  It felt insignificant.

When I got home I turned on Sky News and got the shock of my life when I finally realised what had happened.  Not long after I turned on the TV, the second plane hit.  It was no longer insignificant.  The TV and I seemed alone at home.  The TV was on, but I was not.  It was like being punched on an empty stomach.

When my mother came home, she reminded me that my cousin, Ciarán, worked nearby.  The two buildings collapsed.  There was screaming on the TV, again there was silence in the room.

I cannot remember when my mother finally got in contact with my aunt, Emer, but thankfully, he worked in a building on the next block and was safe.

9/11 still resonates and it will never be forgotten.