Redland Bay played an important part in the history of flying boats between 1953 and 1972.
Flying boats were spacious luxury planes that originally flew between London, Singapore and Sydney and landed on water rather than traditional land runways
A flying boat base was established in Redland Bay during 1953 to service Qantas routes to New Guinea and the South Pacific Islands. By 1955 it was used by Ansett for services between Sydney and Hayman Island. The base was closed in 1972.
Typically, the Qantas flying boats left Sydney's Rose Bay at 7.30pm and called at Redland Bay at 11pm before continuing their journey throughout the night.
The planes landed on one of three ''alighting channels''. The main strip was the three kilometre Snipe Island strip off Redland Bay, and was supported by another one south near Pannikin Island and one further north heading north east off Victoria Point
The then Redland Bay jetty was issued as the embarkation pontoon, battery and storage shed.
The Redland Bay Hotel was used by Qantas as its Redland Bay office and passengers on the Qantas flights could use the hospitality of the hotel.
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Here is a quote from flying boat passenger of the time, Tom Nunan: "Flying was still an adventure then and . . . we were issued with a red Qantas Travel Bag. We travelled to the small Qantas office in Creek Street where luggage was weighed and handed over and we were weighed individually. We were taken to Redland Bay by car. Redland Bay in those days was the bush to anyone living in Brisbane and we seemed to take a long time getting there. My impression of the Sandringham was comfortable seats, plenty of room and the ability to move around freely inside the craft. I have had many flights since then, but nothing can match the charm and comfort of the flyingboat."