1910's

1920's

1930's

1940's

1950's

1960's

1970's

1980's

1990's

2000's

2010's

_

 

This Timeline mainly covers historic public displays prewar and later airshows containing military, warbird and classic aircraft presence. Other general aviation fly-ins and gatherings of limited public interest such as microlights, homebuilds, aerobatic meets and hang gliding are not necessarily included

 

 

 

1950

Visitor's Day Air Display
RNZAF Station Ohakea, 16th of September 1950
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______

Gloster Meteor III _

NZ6001 _

S/Ldr J.R. Wenden

No. 42 Squadron Harvards
No. 41 Squadron Douglas C-47 Dakota
NZ35??
No. 42 Squadron Auster
NZ17??
No. 75 Squadron Mosquitos
No. 42 Squadron de Havillan Devon
NZ18??

 

Notes:
The Meteor which had been flying at Ohakea was to be grounded to become an instructional airframe at the Technical Training School at Hobsonville. The departure from Ohakea co-incided with an Air Force Day open day so a brief display was made for the public before the aircraft's final ferry north to Hobsonville.

The Dakota display is noted in the programme which notes that from 3.00 till 3.10pm there would be "Supply drop by a Dakota of No. 41 transport Squadron."

The programme notes that at 3.20pm there would be a "Flying Demonstration by an Auster of No. 42 Squadron." And at 3.30pm there would be "Aerobatics by Mosquito aircraft of No. 75 Squadron" followed at 3.40pm by "Formation demonstration by a Devon of of No. 42 Squadron."

The Harvards, quantity unknown, were also in the programme which stated that from 3.50 till 4.00pm there would be "Formation Aerobatics by Harvards of No. 42 Squadron."


 

 

Air Pageant
Hood Aerodrome, Masterton, 1950
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______

de Havilland DH98 Mosquito
_

de Havilland DH98 Mosquito
_

de Havilland DH98 Mosquito
_

de Havilland DH98 Mosquito
_

NZ23__
_

NZ23__
_

NZ23__
_

NZ23__
_

(Pilot)
(Navigator)

(Pilot)
(Navigator)

(Pilot)
(Navigator)

(Pilot)
(Navigator)

Airspeed Oxford
NZ
Rearwin Sportster
ZK-ALF

 

Notes:


 

1951

1952

Air Display at Woodbourne
RNZAF Station Woodbourne, 23rd of March 1952
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______
de Havilland DH98 Mosquito
NZ2331

Pilot - F/O Cyril Waters

Navigator - Sgt John Campbell

 

A No. 75 Squadron Mosquito NZ2331 took part and crashed after the display, killing both crew Waters and Campbell


 

1953

Walsh Air Pageant
RNZAF Station Whenuapai, October 1953
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______
de Havilland DH98 Mosquito
NZ2308

 

de Havilland DH100 Vampire T.55

de Havilland DH100 Vampire

de Havilland DH100 Vampire

NZ5701

NZ57--

NZ57--

Bristol Freighter (No. 1 Squadron)

Bristol Freighter (No. 1 Squadron)

Bristol Freighter (No. 1 Squadron)

Bristol Freighter (No. 1 Squadron)

NZ59--

NZ59--

NZ59--

NZ5903

 

 

 

Static

Douglas C-47 Dakota (No. 41 Squadron)

Douglas C-47 Dakota (No. 41 Squadron)

Douglas C-47 Dakota (No. 41 Squadron)

Douglas C-47 Dakota (No. 41 Squadron)

Douglas C-47 Dakota (No. 41 Squadron)

Douglas C-47 Dakota (No. 41 Squadron)

NZ35--

NZ35--

NZ35--

NZ35--

NZ35--

NZ35--

North American P-51D Mustang

North American P-51D Mustang

North American P-51D Mustang

NZ2425

NZ24--

NZ24--

GAF Canberra B.20
A84-202
W/Cr Cumming RAAF
English Electric Canberra (No. 540 Sqn)
BEA Vickers Viscount
G-AVAM
Pan American Airways Douglas DC-4
EoN Olympia 2B glider
ZK-GAA

 

 


 

 

1954

1955

Paraparaumu Air Pageant
Paraparaumu Aerodrome, 24th of January 1955
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______

de Havilland DH82 Tiger Moth

de Havilland DH82 Tiger Moth

de Havilland DH82 Tiger Moth

de Havilland DH82 Tiger Moth

de Havilland DH82 Tiger Moth

Parachutist

ZK-

ZK-

ZK-

ZK-

ZK-

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brian Musson

 

 


 

 

Ohakea's 25th Anniversary Airshow
RNZAF Station Ohakea, 28th of March 1955
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______

de Havilland Vampire

NZ57__

Fg Off Murray Turnbull

 

 


 

 

1956

1957

Air Force Air Pageant
RNZAF Station Whenuapai, 21st of February 1957
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______

North American Harvard

North American Harvard

North American Harvard

North American Harvard

North American Harvard

NZ1034

NZ10__

NZ10__

NZ10__

NZ1061

 

 

 

 

Static Display in Hangar

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire

de Havilland Vampire FB52

NZ5732

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Static Display in Hangar

Short Sunderland MR5 XX-A
NZ4118
No. 6 Squadron
North American P-51D Mustang
NZ2423
No. 42 Squadron
Handley Page Hastings
NZ5803
Static for Walk Through
English Electric Canberra
A84-235
No. 6 Squadron RAAF
RAF Vickers Valetta
WJ___ 'G'

 

Notes:


 

 

1958

Air Force Day
RNZAF 21st Anniversary Airshow, RNZAF Station Ohakea
29th of March 1958
____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______
RNZAF de Havilland Vampire Solo display to open the airshow (No. 75 Squadron, RNZAF)
NZ57__
F/O Murray Turnbull

Fifteen more RNZAF de Havilland Vampires (No. 75 Squadron, RNZAF) took off and joined Turnbull. During the show they formed the number '21' and did a pass, later forming their squadron number '75' for another pass, and later still making a mock attack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

RNZAF Short Sunderland of No. 6 Squadron, RNZAF, from RNZAF Station Hobsonville
NZ4111
(XX-B)
RNZAF Mitsubishi Zero (on static display, now at Auckland War Memorial Museum)
NZ6000
Static inside a hangar
RNZAF Grumman Avenger

NZ250_

RNZAF de Havilland Devons
NZ18__
RNZAF North American Harvards
NZ10__
RNZAF Handley Page Hastings (No. 40 Squadron, RNZAF, from Whenuapai)
NZ580_
RNZAF Bristol Freighter (No. 41 Squadron, RNZAF, from Whenuapai) landed supplies for the SAS paratroops, and an Army Howitzer was seen loaded onto a Freighter too
NZ5909

RAF Handley Page Hastings

RAF Handley Page Hastings

One of these Hastings dropped 23 members of the NZSAS in a parachute drop in their first ever drop onto New Zealand soil

WJ336

TG580

_
_
_
_

RAF Vickers Valiant - flown by New Zealander Leonard Trent VC, DFC

RAF Vickers Valiant Mk1

XO862
_

WP207

Leonard Trent VC, DFC and four crew

 

RAAF English Electric Canberra

RAAF English Electric Canberra

A84-___

A84-___

F/O J.H. Johnson RAAF

F/O B.A. Johnson RAAF

RAAF Lockheed Neptune (No. 11 Sqn)
A89-311

W/C Mahon RAAF (Captain)
F/Lt Donnolly RAAF (2nd Pilot)
F/Lt Donaldson RAAF (Crew)
F/Lt Lonie RAAF (Crew)
F/Lt McLeod RAAF (Crew)
W/O Barnaby RAAF (Crew)
F/Sgt Robotham RAAF (Crew)
Lt Col Shearman USAF (Passenger) And six ground crew

USAF Boeing KC135

USAF Boeing KC135

One of these aircraft gave a handling demonstration. One also transported General Curtis LeMay from the USA direct to New Zealand

63603

53126

_
_
_
_

USAF Douglas C-124 Globemaster II

USAF Douglas C-124 Globemaster II

USAF Douglas C-124 Globemaster II

9245

10140

(?)

USAF F-100 Super Sabre

USAF F-100 Super Sabre

USAF F-100 Super Sabre

At least one of these three Super Sabres broke the Sound Barrier during the show

53530

63808

63801

_
_

USAF C-130 Hercules

USAF C-130 Hercules

One of the C-130's - gave a handling
demonstration

55-0028

55-0031

_
_

USAF Boeing KC-97G Stratotanker
53-0139
USAF B-47E Stratojet (showed air to air refuelling with the KC-97 tanker)
53-1851
USAF Douglas RB-66 Destroyer (aka the Lead Slead) - gave a handling demo
Convair Metropolitan - this aircraft transported Air Marshal F.R.W. Scherger, Chief of the Air Force for the RAAF, to the event

 

Guests in Attendance included Air Chief Marshall the Hon. Sir Ralph Cochrane, GBE, KCB, AFC, RAF Retired, the RNZAF's first Chief of Air Staff, attended from England

Group Captain Leonard Trent VC, DFC, attended as pilot of the Valiant bomber

Also Air Marshal The Earl of Bandon KBE, CB, CVO, DSO, Commander in Chief of the Far East Air Force which included the RNZAF's No's 14 and 41 Squadrons in Singapore along with several RAF and RAAF squadrons

And another guest in attendance was the USAF Vice-Chief, General Curtis E. LeMay

From Austalia the RAAF was represented by Chief of the Air Force, Air Marshal F.R.W. Scherger


 

1959

Gala Air Day - Wellington Airport Opening Day Airshow
Wellington International Airport, Rongotai, Wellington
25th of October 1959

____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______
RNZAF Handley Page Hastings (No. 40 Squadron, RNZAF, from Whenuapai)
NZ580_
RNZAF Short Sunderland (No. 6 Squadron, RNZAF, from Hobsonville)
NZ4113
'M'

Mal Gunton

Robin Klitscher

Ray Tocker

RNZAF de Havilland Vampires (No. 14 Squadron, RNZAF, from Ohakea)

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

NZ57__

Flt Lt Colin W. Rudd

F/O Peter M. Rhodes

F/O T.E. Enright

F/O Russell Branks

RNZAF de Havilland Devon
NZ
RNZAF DHC-2 Antarctic Beaver
NZ6010
RNZAF North American Harvards (CFS Wigram Aerobatic Team)

NZ10__

NZ10__

NZ10__

RNZAF Bristol Freighter
NZ59__
RAAF Lockheed Neptune
A89-__

RAAF GAF Canberra B20

RAAF GAF Canberra B20

RAAF GAF Canberra B20

A84-244

A84-__

A84-__

RAAF Lockheed C-130A Hercules

A97-207

A97-210
_
_
_
_

 

F/O S.G. Hyland and crew
Passengers included Mr. Elai (Australian Press Relations), and Wing Commander Brazier (C.O. of No. 38 (TT) Squadron RAAF)

USAF Lockheed C-130 Hercules

USAF Lockheed C-130 Hercules

55-0042

 

US Navy C-54 (Operation Deep Freeze,
Christchurch)
JD 56???
USAF Douglas C-124 Globemaster II (Operation Deep Freeze, Christchurch)
51-0112
USAF Douglas RB-66 Destroyer
53-0438
USAF North American F-100 Super Sabre
81-222

USAF RF-101 Voodoo FB-040

USAF RF-101 Voodoo FB-050

USAF RF-101 Voodoo FB-084

USAF RF-101 Voodoo FB-094

56-0040

56-0050

56-0084

56-0094

RAF Avro Vulcan B.1 of No. 617 Sqn
_

RAF Avro Vulcan B.1 of No. 617 Sqn

RAF Avro Vulcan B.1 of No. 617 Sqn

XH498
_

XH499

XH502

S/Ldr Tony Smailes
Bob Mitchell and crew

 

F/Lt Peter Thompson DFC

RAF Blackburn Beverley, coded P
XM104
RAF Bristol Britannia C.1
XL638
Harry Liddell
RAF de Havilland Comet C.2
XK669
From No. 216 Squadron RAF
NAC Douglas DC3
ZK-
NAC Vickers Viscount
ZK-
SAFE Air Bristol Freighter
ZK-
Armstrong Whitworth Argosy
 
James Aviation Douglas DC3 Topdresser
ZK-AZL
Lockheed L.188 Electra
 
BEA Handley Page Herald
G-
Sqn Ldr Hedley Hazelden (Handley Page's chief test pilot)
Fokker F-27 Friendship demonstrator
VH-TFI
Operated by TAA
Piper Apache
 

 

This was a weather-delayed airshow. It was scheduled originally to take place on the 24th of October but had been disrupted by rain and high wind till the next day. The actual official opening ceremony did take place on the 24th but the flying display was delayed till the 25th.

Three Vulcan B.1's of No. 617 Squadron, with an RAF Transport Command Bristol Britannia carrying the support crews, flew from the UK and arrived in New Zealand on the 19th of October 1959. They were based at RNZAF Station Ohakea during their stay in New Zealand. The welcome these bombers and thier support crew got on arrival was described as magnificent, and the Mayor of nearby Palmerston North had put that town's facilities at No. 617 Squadron's disposal.

On the 22nd of October the three Vulcans flew the length of he North and South Islands of new Zealand on a flag waving tour, overflying as many towns and schools as possible, often being directed by requests coming through via the Air Traffic Controllers of where to fly over next. On the 23rd of October the three bombers flew a practice for the air display and then flew a "Vic" formation over Palmerston North.

On the 25th the three Vulcans took part in the air display, but their planned and practiced full routine was dropped due to the gusty weather, so instead the three aircraft did a run in from the south in "Vic" formation. Then one of the three Vulcans, XH498 flown by Squadron Leader Tony Smailes, was meant to break off from the other two aircraft (which were returning to Ohakea) to land at Wellington with the intention of going on static display.

However on approach to land the aircraft encountered a down draft, causing it to sink rapidly and the port undercarriage struck hard on the soft turf at the lip of the airfiled, 150 yards from the concrete runway. This damaged the Vulcan's port undercarriage and wing. Smailes immediately performed an overshoot and then headed straight to Ohakea where an emergency landing was successfully performed on a foam-covered runway, with the undercarriage collapsing but all onboard safely exiting the bomber. This Vulcan remained at Ohakea for some months while repairs were being carried out.

The Sunderland also suffered damage by striking the new runway during their display, caused also by Rongotai's infamous gusts and downdrafts. The Sunderland made it back to Hobsonville with the crew hastily repairing a large hole in the hull en route, which luckily held when they alighted on the harbour. For more on this, click here for a brilliant eye-witness account from the co-pilot, Robin Klitscher.

A USAF Boeing KB-50 aerial tanker was also at Ohakea to sipport the US aircraft but may not have participated in the air display itself. It wore the tail number 0-90326


 

 

RNZAF Open Day
RNZAF Station Ohakea
Labour Day, 26th of October 1959

____________Aircraft_Participant_____________
______Pilot_and_Crew______

RAF Avro Vulcan B.1 of No. 617 Sqn

RAF Avro Vulcan B.1 of No. 617 Sqn

XH499

XH502

 

F/Lt Peter Thompson DFC

 

This was a station open day held because it was a public holiday and the station had many visiting overseas aircraft at the time. No doubt most RNZAF types and many visitors were seen on static and flying displays but at this stage only the two Vulcans are known to have flown.


 




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