Advertisement
If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on hello@boards.ie for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact hello@boards.ie

Dublin Airport Memories

Options
  • 09-04-2020 11:58pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 338 ✭✭


    A bit random this but was thinking back to my memories of Dublin airport as a kid and wondered what other people remember. I used to go out and spend a week with my cousin in Swords in the summer holidays and used to go up to the airport every day to “plane spot”.

    This would have been the late 80s when I was about 10. I remember going in on the arrivals level where they had security checks at the door where airport police would check bags, There was an escalator straight ahead up to departures level with only the BurgerKing to the right – that was as far at the terminal extended. I think that it was the Failte Bar before that but obviously was too young to indulge at the time.

    I remember the departures level having just 3 check in areas all with thin white light strips mainly with the Aer Lingus logo. Area 1 was over by the toilets and Bank of Ireland and was for US flights and had a back and front. Area 2 was in the centre and was for Europe and UK Provincial and then just across from the escalator to the other side was London check in. I remember that they had different colour check in tags for the different destinations I remember LHR being read, LGW being green and DUB being a light blue. I think around that time they managed to add more check in space with another 2 sided rectangular area in the main floor becoming the London check in area for Aer Lingus and others and the older London check in area becoming the check in area for Ryanair and C;ub Air and then Virgin. They seemed really modern at the time having a creamy plastic look and I remember them having electronic displays instead of signs hung from them as they had at the previous check in desks.

    The only shops I remember on the departures level was a newsagent/sweet shop between the check in areas and then a Hughes and Hughes book shop just behind which was beside the departure gares which led down towards the old B /300 gates. I remember even before that being able to see my Granny walking along post security check to the departure gates from the windows there and having a good view down.

    I remember then each summer going up to the airline offices and asking for timetables/postcards or anything else that might have appealed. I know the offices are still there but it seemed so exotic back then the signs outside the offices of the different airlines.

    One of my strongest memories is of the Link Building the long corridor down towards the old A/200 gates which was then landside with a long row of non descript offices on the right. I think the first door was actually the Aer Lingus business lounge but after that it was just doors and between the doors were these large white panels that had sketches of major buildings/sites from many different cities, On the opposite side looking out the windows were sets of 4 brown seats for people just to look at the planes that felt so close. I remember the Shorts 360s used to taxi real close and usually up to 3 would park in a row just in front of the window.

    There was one stand just in front of B28 where jets would park and use steps in front of the airbridge gates and it was great just looking at the crew boarding, then the passengers going up the steps and figuring out where they were going to. Flying just seemed so much more exotic in those days. Sitting there it was almost overpowering the smell of aviation fuel . My absolute favourite sound was the explosion of the old BAC111s starting up their engines.

    The seats ended but you could still go down the corridor a bit further and get to a very sweet spot through another set of doors that led to stairs down a level. This was only a small space (and might have been moved on from it once or twice) but gave a perfect view of the planes taking off and landing on the old runway 23. All departing flights would taxi right by the window going down to runway 23. If I remember right I think the 3 Aer Lingus 747s left at 1130/1300/1430 in the summer and the excitement of seeing the nose of the 747 emerging from one side of the A pier and turn to taxi by the window we were at used to fill me with excitement each and every time.

    Thar area was all closed off eventually but still have great memories of it. I remember then the best place to spot was up on the top floor to the right of the escalator where I think there was the restaurant overflow area and then essentially a long gallery with seats where you could look over the apron. I think that was added a bit after my first visits to the airport. I think originally that when you went up that escalator you could only go left to the main restaurant or straight ahead into a posh restaurant –obviously never went there!!

    Spent so long looking at the flight info screens – remember them being brown and having blue writing and just like chunky TV screens.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 68,511 ✭✭✭✭L1011


    The full portal scanners to get in to the terminals at all - at the peak of IRA activity in GB - is the foremost memory I have.

    That and the displays for incoming passengers you could type a name in to.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,629 ✭✭✭b318isp


    Locking my bike at the recess just after the deperature area entrance, then walking down the link corridor to the end, going through the doors to the top of the stairwell facing Iona. Occasionally you were moved on from being there, but most of the time there was no issue. I'd use the toliet just outside that door, feeling I was using an employee facility.

    I also just about remember the museum, with the large window outside looking down on the B gates.

    I think the link corridor once was completely open to the check-in area, but an aluminum/glass structure was put up later, so you had to go through the glass door to get down there.

    I remember the portacabins/offices for some airlines down at the cargo area - and looking for stickers and timetables there too.

    Near Hanger 6, there was a field you could access. A great remote spot to watch arrivals and departures...

    ...and that said, finals on RWY24 were one of the best in the world. Memories of seeing Tridents roaring towards you over Forest Little...wow!


  • Registered Users Posts: 427 ✭✭Boxcar_Willie


    I remember getting a haircut in a barbers there once , close to the museum .
    Barber was a gentleman , always had a good story to tell .


  • Registered Users Posts: 391 ✭✭Skyknight


    I remember getting a haircut in a barbers there once , close to the museum .
    Barber was a gentleman , always had a good story to tell .




    Bennie was an awesome guy.... as you say, always a complete gentleman.


    There was also 'Check Point Charlie':D, which was opposite the entrance to the Old canteen (now airport police station) and Ops Block(the entrance to which was through the concrete columns).


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,119 ✭✭✭Ger Roe


    When I was a chizzler, int the early 70's, the airport was the most fascinating place in the world and we would go there on a family day out, to watch the activity (sad, I know, but there was no internet at the time!). I even went to the restaurant there on my communion day - how exotic!

    I remember the small museum with Iolar hanging from the roof and being up on the outdoor roof viewing terrace to wave off any relatives that were going abroad - usually only honeymooning aunts and uncles. The noise from aircraft engines was horrendous and would not be tolerated these days. I also remember the rows of space- age looking plastic bucket seats in the arrivals hall with small tv screens attached that you could operate by putting coins in - even the vending machines for chocloate bars were a revelation.

    In my teens I would often cycle out to the airport from my home in Sandyford for a bit of spotting and remember once being chased out of the roundy multi storey car park by a security guard. I found accidental access to it through one of the lifts that stopped off at the secret floor to let you into the permanently closed structure (security reasons, I think. I also remember being electronically scanned with a hand held paddle device whenever entering the terminal building - think it was an explosive residue 'sniffer', but maybe it was just a portable metal detector, though I don't remember anyone ever having to clear out their pockets.

    I also remember being brought by my dad to see the first EI 747 fly in. Ireland had reached the future and the airport and it's surroundings was packed with people there to witness the event. The plane flew in low over Dublin on approach so everyone could take a look at the new marvel and when it landed at the airport the Army No1 band struck up a musical welcome before all the political VIP's of the time headed out on the tarmac to be pictured with Ireland's latest achievement - we now owned a Jumbo Jet!. Back in those days it was like we owned it, Aer Lingus was the national carrier and there was a distinct pride in seeing the shamrock fly overhead heading off across the world to fly our flag in far flung foreign places.

    These days, although the airport is more technically advanced than it was then, it doesn't have the same appeal. It's all a commercial enterprise now, no 'civic pride' like there used to be. It's an age thing, I wouldn't expect anyone not of my age to understand, the old building and facilities had an air of national pioneering spirit about them that doesn't exist now.


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 213 ✭✭sandbelter


    I have older memories of Dublin.

    I always remember the IAC Alouette's arriving at the Airport after the Lufthansa high jacking in Mogadishu and how the used to sweep around the Lufthansa B737's as they taxied in from the runway as a buffer to any heat seeking missile attack and admiring the bravery of these men.

    I remember the Aviogenex TU-134A charter's to Pula, they left at about 11pm on a Saturday and used to wake up the North side of Dublin as they left. Ear shattering is the word I would use to describe them, though Spantax's CV-990's gave it a good try.

    I remember the first Swissair DC-9 operating the inaugural service from Zurich, HB-IFK "Kloten". Followed the next day by Sabena's B737 service from Brussels.

    Excitement was watching the Iberia B727, SAS DC 9 and Lufthansa B737 taxi out for take off together where we could dream of being a European airport for whole 15min, apart from that it was Aer Lingus, BA and seagulls.

    I remember so strong was the desperation for some aircraft out of the ordinary that a rumour went around of an American Airlines B707 coming in from PHL with am American marching band for st pat's day. We all marched out in dreadful weather (airline enthusiasts were locked out of the terminal for a good part of the late 1970's as a pair of them had got on the roof what is now the 200 gates in a major security breech to take a photo of a SAS DC 9...did the merde fly after that!), so we all stood in the rain to for this B707, * spoiler alert* , No American B707 and we all caught the worst flu.

    So when the rumor of an Aeroflot service to Moscow with a TU154 spread do you think we'd know any better? No, we dutifully marched out watched seagulls and caught the flu again....the irony was when Aeroflot did send a TU154 (CCCP-85222) there was a match on and no one there so first most air enthusiasts knew was knew it took off, along with all of the North side of Dublin...with ear shattering noise that only a Tupolev could seem to manage. Good thing was it really set you up for dance music later.

    My favorite was the Caravelles. They came in spring with a French rugby match, left in September with last Finnair charter or with Alitalia's last's seasonal service. In summer we had Sterling, Finnair, SATA, ACI and Aviaco regularly, some years Alitalia and Hispania. SAS and Iberia has stopped using them to Dublin by the time I arrived on the scene.

    But of all things from the 1970's it's often the most regular you miss the most, TWA and Pan Am (both sent B707's), Aer Turas ...but I don't miss the security.

    The 1980's if anything were drabber but I was studying now for my inter and leaving. Then life happens .....and you go in a different directions.


  • Registered Users Posts: 219 ✭✭notuslimited


    Once a plane spotter always a plane spotter. I’m 51 now and still love to visit any airport and look at any plane. My DUB plane spotting heyday was from about from 1977 to 1986 and I remember fondly congregating every weekend upstairs looking out onto the ramp with about 20 other regulars with my Sigma 2 airband radio my 10x50 binoculars. I remember walking down to the link building where the Clyden Airways DC-3 was parked; I remember well all of the aircraft other posters have listed above. A favorite was going down to the lads in the Aer Turas office and asking would they show us the Britannia and if it was quiet they would oblige and we would head out onto the ramp in the VW van. The smell of horse chit was overpowering on the cargo deck. I also remember discovering an Aer Lingus rubbish tip where they chucked out lots of old PR material that was no longer needed. It was a veritable treasure trove. My parents would give me the busfare from Coolock which meant the 17a and then a 41 or 33 outside of Santry stadium. I would always try and thumb a lift so I would have more money for the space invaders game in the arrivals hall. I also remember saving up my pocket money and buying a ticket from DUB to SNN return to do a days plane spotting. I flew down to SNN on the 747 to return later that day on a 1-11. I think I was 14 at the time and I didn’t tell my parents what I was up to. When I left school I tried for the EI cadetship twice getting to the final interview both times but alas it wasn’t to be. Worked in LHR with EI for a time before coming back to Ireland. All of my jobs since then have been in Banking which has afforded me lots of opportunity to fly extensively. Every couple of years my wife allows me to indulge my passion and I’ve taken solo plane spotting runs to Asia, South America and the boneyards in the US. Wings clipped at the moment but next trip in the planning for South East Asia.


  • Registered Users Posts: 20,049 ✭✭✭✭neris


    Corbalis house


  • Registered Users Posts: 777 ✭✭✭Board Walker


    My first time in Dublin airport was only 2010 going to Ibiza :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 25,406 ✭✭✭✭coylemj


    I once met a DAA employee in the section of the airport which was built as a multi-storey car park but which never operated as such. At one stage, he and I were walking down a really wide corridor and just as I was about to ask him if they had really big mail and/or coffee trolleys, it suddenly dawned on me that this was designed as a driveway for cars!

    When we were finished our business, he walked me down a stairs, opened a door, said goodbye, I walked out and found myself in the main terminal, it was like something out of a James Bond movie. I walked away for about 10m, turned around and for the life of me, couldn't figure out where I had come from, the door I had walked through was completely camouflaged by the decor.


  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 327 ✭✭Bebop


    I remember my dad brought myself and my 3 brothers to the airport on the 41 bus, it was mid 1950’s, most of the aircraft were DC3 with a few Vickers Viscount, we stood on the outside viewing gallery were you could see all the action and hear the engines
    I was intrigued to see the pilots boarding the DC3 by climbing a small ladder under the belly, don’t know why they didn’t just walk up the stairs at the back,
    The viscount made a wonderful noise when it started up
    Later in the 1960’s I acquired Honda 50 and started making my own way to the airport and do some plane spotting, I remember one weekend Aer Lingus had an open day, I was able to walk around all the hangars and workshops and Queue up to walk through the passenger cabin of a parked BAC 111, in the front and down the air stairs at the back


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,812 ✭✭✭billie1b


    coylemj wrote: »
    I once met a DAA employee in the section of the airport which was built as a multi-storey car park but which never operated as such. At one stage, he and I were walking down a really wide corridor and just as I was about to ask him if they had really big mail and/or coffee trolleys, it suddenly dawned on me that this was designed as a driveway for cars!

    When we were finished our business, he walked me down a stairs, opened a door, said goodbye, I walked out and found myself in the main terminal, it was like something out of a James Bond movie. I walked away for about 10m, turned around and for the life of me, couldn't figure out where I had come from, the door I had walked through was completely camouflaged by the decor.

    You talking about the carpark that Customs, Airport Police, the Pod and DAA upper management use? It’s a proper car park but with a maze of offices behind it and access up to the Pod.


  • Posts: 5,369 [Deleted User]


    billie1b wrote: »
    You talking about the carpark that Customs, Airport Police, the Pod and DAA upper management use? It’s a proper car park but with a maze of offices behind it and access up to the Pod.

    Circular one at the end I presume he means?


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,105 ✭✭✭✭smurfjed


    I first started working in Dublin airport in 1984, so lots of memories from crawling around the Constellation parked in the hangar area, and the B25’s with the JU52 (Spanish), to watching USAF F16’s as they refueled after a local display, the countless B707’s, 727, 747’s, DC-8’s, Convairs, Tridents, VC-10, having the ability to just walk in and wander around the EI Hangars to check what they had in for maintenance. Then companies such as AVAIR, AER TURAS, Club Air, Virgin with Viscount and 727’s, Clyden Airways, Shannon Executive and that Bandeirante operator who started in Waterford (Whatever happened to them :)) There was always an amazing sense of excitement surrounding the airport and a sense of mystic surrounding Shannon as you would never know what would land next.

    Still involved in aviation, and up to a month ago, loving every minute of it :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,893 ✭✭✭EchoIndia


    3862213729_d0319e4d67_b.jpg


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 6,521 Mod ✭✭✭✭Irish Steve


    And EI-BDU is still in service, albeit with a few significant modifications, it visited Dublin just over 12 months ago.

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/shanair/32805323618/in/photostream/

    Shore, if it was easy, everybody would be doin it.😁



  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Arts Moderators, Entertainment Moderators Posts: 20,652 CMod ✭✭✭✭amdublin


    Have I made this memory up in my head??

    I remember being brought to Dublin Airport in the early 1980's by my dad who met his friends in the bar there. I think it was long bar with glass windows. I remember playing lots of video games/slot machines in the bar.

    Is this correct???


  • Registered Users Posts: 254 ✭✭FunkyDa2


    AF1QipNSBq2T9oqfKf7u7CGpG8tVC9-9M-4Z6sX1b7zz


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,406 ✭✭✭cml387


    amdublin wrote: »
    Have I made this memory up in my head??

    I remember being brought to Dublin Airport in the early 1980's by my dad who met his friends in the bar there. I think it was long bar with glass windows. I remember playing lots of video games/slot machines in the bar.

    Is this correct???

    Dunno about the video games (sounds likely) but the old bar in the eighties had a panoramic view over the airport,overlooking the B-gates


Advertisement