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The La Babalu Club Poster and Air Ferry Ticket

Ryde airport opened on 27th June 1932 and it was possible to fly from the Island to Portsmouth, London and the Channel Islands. Amy Johnson, who was the first woman to fly solo from London to Australia, once worked as a pilot on this ferry service. The airport closed for good in the 1950s and by the late 1960s, the control tower had been turned into the La Babalu nightclub – where local people met up and danced the night away!

Image: Museum of Ryde

(If you are in a group, perhaps take turns to read each story out loud in character!)

The sisters, Edie and Penny, began their journey at Bristol Airport, where they planned a trip away to the Island for a few days and purchased plane tickets to Ryde Airport. They climbed the steps and boarded the small plane which took off and flew them over land and across the sea to Ryde. When they got off the plane, they hadn’t noticed that somehow they had also travelled through time to the 1960s.

They continue walking towards what they believe is the air terminal. Imagine their surprise when they get inside and it is no longer a terminal, but rather the La Babalu Club!

And listen to this short sound clip!

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