BRIEF HISTORY OF THE KALOCSA AIRFIELD
Hungarian military airport, only the fighters of the Hungarian Airforce used
the airport and the airspace.
After the Hugarian trial to escape from communism, the Soviets came into
Hungary. The helicopters and bombers of the Soviet Army used the airport
and the airspace. The use of this airspace was strictly forbidden for civil
and sporting flying. This meant a forty-year-exile for parachutist, power-driven
and sailplane pilots and later for hang- gliders and specialists. The aeroclubs
of Szeged, Kiskunfélegyháza, Szolnok, Budapest, Õcsény
and Baja admitted the lovers of airsports at and around Kalocsa. Then, under
the egis of MHSZ (Hungarian National Defence Association) the aim of pilot
and parachutist training was to provide specialist-supply for the army. Although
Kalocsa was practically deprived of its airport, still it had many air sports
enthusiasts as these trainings were free. On László Kollár
s own initiative a corporation agreement was signed in 1966 by the Headquarters
of Soviet South Troops and by MHSZ, which made it possible for Hungarian
parachutists to bale out from Soviet helicopters at the airport. In 1969
the Hungarian Parachutist Representative Team was the guest of the Soviets,
too. This possibility came to an end in 1971.
The Soviets built barracks and blocks of flats near the airport. Just a sin
the case of other territories used by the Soviet Army, after they leave of
the troops very extensive environmental pollution was discovered here, too.
After the withdrawal of Soviet troops the estimation of damages and the stopping
of soil pollution began. This later was terminated by financial straits.
The reorganisation of local airsport began through the efforts of Bácska
Hang-gliding Club, functioning in the area of Baja and Kalocsa.
Meanwhile, there were attempts to make use of the airport mainly in the view
of the 1996 World Fair. The very high initial price and later the cancelling
of the World Fair dashed the interest. There were few airy offers but the
airport remained a closed object without an operational permit. The buildings
and runway are under armed protection and they are continuously being destroyed
by weather conditions.
The hang-gliders of Bácska Aeroclub rented the hangar and a few-
hundred-meter long grassy area in the northern part of the airport. This
initiative meant the presence of flying at Kalocsa. They established Flyers
for Kalocsa Fund, and their aim was to help Kalocsa and its environs progress
by keeping at least this area. They offered the police and the fire brigade
their technology to help their work in the fields of air observance and
photography. Parachuting became more and more popular at Kalocsa, nowadays
there are more than thirty parachutists who bale out regularly. Up to the
present they belonged to Aeroclub Kiskunfélegyháza. Besides
the growth in the number of parachutists, their professional level rose
significantly, and they organised successful training camps with international
An LRI (Aviation and Airport Management) survey was carried out concerning
Airport Kalocsa, which suggested the separation of the barracks, the fuel
storage, the airport area, and other buildings and areas. This made it possible
for sporting flyers to prepare their project. The essence of the project
is to use the airport in its original function because that is how we can
make a real use of it.
However, in May l995 a project was brought to light according to which the
airport would be converted into and used as surface oil storage. There were
rumours that a group would buy the airport for this purpose. This would
practically mean the end of the airport and the ceasing of the region s chance
for potential progress. At the same time, the construction of such oil storage
would be very dangerous for the inhabitants of Kalocsa because of the prevailing
northwestern wind direction and the closeness of the densely inhabited areas.
The devotees of airsports would have been forced to a grassy area near the
dumping ground of Kalocsa which is not suitable for aeroplanes and parachutists.
Naturally it would not promote the progress of tourist industry and economy
of the region, either.
In August 1995 the sporting flyers organised open days and as the event was
widely advertised, it became very successful. This proved that with proper
professional arrangements the conceptions of using the airport by small planes
are realistic. In connection with the success of the event on 11th October
1995 a long-considered idea was brought to life: AEROPORT KALOCSA Aeronautical
Club (in exact translation, the name is Aeroport Kalocsa Flyers Association)
was formed. On 25th October 1995 Dr Hegedûs Dezsõ, the secretary
general of MRSZ (Hungarian Aeronautical Association) visited to Kalocsa.
He outlined a new conception according to which the establishing of National
Flyers Fund" was under way and this Fund would run Airport Kalocsa with the
control of sporting flyers. On the same day the Club held a press conference
about the forming of itself, its aims and about the importance of the airport.
On this conference it became evident that the three flyers organisations
(the Club, the Bácska Aeroclub and the Flyers for Kalocsa Fund) would
take steps together in the case of the airport through Aeroport Kalocsa
Aeronautical Club and with the support of MRSZ.At the end of October the
proceedings necessary for authorizing the airport and the collection of official
licenses began. The Association started its first sailplane pilot training.
In November the American representatives of IFOR Forces observed Airport
Kalocsa as an alternative aero serving base of a potential Baja depot. Instead
of Baja the IFOR chose Pécs, so this usage is not a real alternative
in the case of the airport. By December the management of the Club collected
a large number of supporting statements in the interest of putting the airport
In the meantime the realization of National flyers Fund significantly slowed
down, and the case of the airport s privatization got to ÁPV Rt. (the
governmental organization to control the privatization process in Hungary).
Because of these reasons, the preparation of a project became justified.
This project suggests such a solution that serves regional and national
interests. Thanks to the efforts of the managing director of the Club in
February 1996 the airport obtained the temporary operational permit. Between
1st- 11th March the Aeroport Kalocsa Flyers Association organised a
Flying-Parachuting Exhibition to arouse the public s attention and to prove
that the nearly hundred pilots and parachutists and their intentions must
be and can be taken seriously.
One of the villages (Uszod), mentioned above didn't signed the temporary
permission for this year. It means, that airfield activity should be restricted
to a part of the airport. It seems, that the company payd some of the money
to Uszod for the part now owned by the village. This company is dealing with
(store, buy and sell) not only oil, but environmentally hazardous materials,
like dangerous waste. There is a civil initiative to prevent establishing
a hazardous depot just next to Kalocsa on the former airbase.
The Aeroport Kalocsa Aeronautical Club continues its activity, organizes
programmes on the part of the airfield belongs to Kalocsa and
The local authorities and the mayors of Kalocsa and Foktõ decided
to establish an industrial park and invite investors to the territory of
the the former base. If the local authority of village Uszod changes
the decision and wouldn't sell its part to that company, the airfield can
be kept for flying besides the industrial park.
Now it is the state of the art. Flyers will never give up, they will
continue flying even without the airfield. It will be harder, but maybe there
is a field somewhere appropriate for landing. Only a part of the national
treasure will be lost...