Mustang Joy Flights - Merlin Power


How to find Us

MUSTANG VH-BOB is located at

RAAF Williams
Point Cook Base
Melways Key Map Page 12

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  • The Eastgate family has been associated with the Australian Air Force since 1916 when Mr Ernest Eastgate joined the AFC and was trained as a scout pilot. He flew with AFC Squadrons during World War 1, achieving some 800 hours operational experience. After the war he returned to civilian life as a motor engineer but was recalled in WWII to take up a post as Engineering Officer at the Royal Melbourne Showground Training Facility for the RAAF.
  • He later joined No. 5 Aerodrome Construction Squadron and moved to New Guinea where his Unit built Ward's Air Strip and later, the air strip at Good Enough Island. Ernest's elder son, Colin, joined the RAAF at the onset of WWII and was sent to England where he joined 643 Lancaster Squadron as an air gunner. Unfortunately Colin's aircraft was shot down in 1942 and he is buried in Lille, France. He was survived by a son John whom he never met. John was raised by his devoted mother with the aid of Legacy.
  • In 1948 Robert Henry Eastgate (brother of Ernest) joined Arthur Jelliffe as a director of A. Jelliffe Pty. Ltd., furniture manufacturers (established in 1936).
  • Robert Henry's son, Robert Leslie (or Bob as he is called) joined the Air Training Corp in 1954, aged 13. During his 1956 promotional camp at RAAF Laverton he came face to face with a Mustang aircraft. Standing beside it, he considered whether to have a RAAF career or join his father's furniture firm. His colleagues photographed him at that very moment.

The decision Bob made was to join his father's furniture business in 1956 but also learn to fly and obtain his private pilot's licence.

(Other members of the family to join the Air Training Corp many years later - his daughter Elizabeth and son Rob).

In 1964, Bob began flying training at Royal Vic Aero Club, Moorabbin and whilst landing there one day he was confronted with one of the local Mustangs landing alongside him. This rekindled his interest in finding a Mustang to own.

  • In 1970, after a 2 year search, he finally found a Mustang located in Jerildere and, together with his girlfriend Barbara, he inspected and purchased the aircraft. He also proposed to Barbara on that day, thus gaining two 'birds' at the one time!
  • The Mustang was ferried down to the Forrest Air Hangar, Essendon Airport in 1973. It was then completely overhauled and refurbished and was registered as VH BOB. Together with his family support, they have operated the aircraft since 1976 when it began full time flying.
  • Bob was instrumental in forming The Friends of the RAAF Museum organization.
    Air Marshal Geoff Shepherd, AM, Chief of the Air Force presented him with a Life Membership in 2006.
  • Bob is a Government Approved Valuer for Arts Scheme Historic Aircraft, Engines and Components.
  • Bob's son, Robert Edward, is now a L.A.M.E. and is part of a dedicated group of professional engineers and pilots who maintain and operate the Company's aircraft.


For further information or bookings please call
(03) 9372 0780 or use the contact form on this Website
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Ernie AFC & Leslie - Army Transport WWI
Ernie AFC & Leslie - Army Transport WWI

Bob's big decision - 1956
Bob's big decision, 1956

Bob atop Mustang VH-BOB

Colin Eastgate - WWII
Colin Eastgate, WWII

Eastgate Family Clan atop Mustang VH-BOB
The Eastgate Clan atop Mustang Bob

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All flights are subject to

Mustang JoyFlights is subject to weather conditions 

Weather on the Day 

Mustang Joy Flights is subject to pilot availability 

Pilot Availibility

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