Perhaps it was the aircraft which attended the Wellington International Airport opening in October 1959. Due to the restricted apron area at Wellington many of the visiting military aircraft were based at Ohakea and Christchurch during their NZ visit
Post by errolmartyn on Jan 25, 2017 12:31:51 GMT 12
According to unidentified Christchurch newspaper clippings, the nosewheel incident at Harewood occurred on the morning of 26 Sep 59. The Argus, piloted by Wg Cdr C. Troontow and one of two visiting New Zealand at the time, arrived at Christchurch at 0950 that day 'after taxi-ing along the northeast runway near the Deep Freeze parking area, nosed into the soft earth [another report says 'loose shingle'] as it left the tarmac . . . it was 11 a.m. before it was out of its difficulties and back on the taxiway with the aid of the United States Air Force.'
'The Argus is on the first goodwill tour ever made by the R.C.A.F. to New Zealand by an operational aircraft. It is one of two Argus aircraft which went to Queensland to take part in the Centennial celebrations of the State and Australia's Air Force Week from September 14 to 20. From Amberley, near Brisbane, they flew to New Zealand.'
The two Argus arrived at Whenuapai on 23 Sep 59. In command of them was Gp Capt J. H. Roberts, an Australian who joined the RCAF in 1939. One machine later flew into Rongotai on the 25th, the other reported to be at Ohakea that same day.
Film of the event may survive: 'The Canadians are making a television film of the 18,000-mile tour for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and ware travelling with an Air Force public relations team consisting of a writer and two cameramen, under Squadron Leader R. Wood.'
Author: Swift to the Sky – New Zealand’s Military Aviation History Author/publisher: For Your Tomorrow - A record of New Zealanders who have died while serving with the RNZAF and Allied Air Services since 1915 & A Passion For Flight - New Zealand aviation before the Great War. Publisher of Gp Capt C M Hanson’s By Such Deeds - Honours and Awards in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, 1923-1999
Post by Dave Homewood on Jan 25, 2017 17:16:49 GMT 12
Thanks Errol. I love the way the forum manages to give full details to vague photos.
Madmax, I have never seen reference to an Argus at the airport opening. The airport was not officially opened till the 25th of October 1959, a month after the period Errol is writing about. I am not sure if the two Argus would have been in New Zealand a whole month? So I guess it visited Rongotai before the opening?
I do not have any information on the presence or otherwise of the two Argus aircraft at the opening of Wellington airport in late October 1959, but as their New Zealand "tour" was to be completed between the dates of 23rd and 28th September 1959, this would seem to preclude any local activity by them a whole month later. However I do have some circumstantial evidence of where they planned to visit during this jaunt. Incidentally, identities of the two aircraft were RCAF 20725, W/T callsign VC-AGH, captain F/L E N Starink, and 20731, call sign VC-AGM, Wing Commander C Torontow, AFC. The entire party, carried on these aircraft alone, comprised some 18 officers, 14 SNCOs, and 16 corporals or airmen, or 48 in all, split equally between the two aircraft. However I do have the following information from H-37 (Annual Report of RNZAF, and Administrative Instruction No. 40/1959 of 14/9/59), the latter document in particular stating that it was intended that these aircraft visit Whenuapai, Ohakea, and Wellington and Christchurch civil airports. Purpose of the visit was to participate in maritime exercises with the RNZAF and RNZN, "and the aircraft and equipment will be demonstrated to service personnel." Lectures and briefings were to be provided by the RCAF team to RNZAF and RNZN personnel, with senior officers from Headquarters to be taken to Wellington airport to inspect the aircraft. Unfortunately I do not have the full itinerary for this visit, but I hope to obtain it in the near future. Certain politicians in New Zealand at this time (this was during the term of the second Labour Government, with P G "Mick" Connolly [Minister of Defence] and Arnold Nordmeyer [Minister of Finance] in particular having expressed great interest in the type during late 1958, so perhaps the Canadians were hoping for something more than just tyre kickers to closely inspect these modern sub-hunters. David D
Just a quick look at photos, and see I have various Argus' between 1971 and 1978. The first Aurora I noted is 1981. Between 1973 and 1978, I lived in the married patch at Whenuapai, just behind the shops.
Hi Dave, Yes, you are probably correct. The images I have were most likely taken a month before Wellington's official opening as the over-run area of Runway 34 is still void of grass in my pic which points to the airport having only recently been completed
Post by julieczerneda on Jan 27, 2017 0:47:55 GMT 12
Hello. I'm the daughter of the Argus pilot, F/L Everett Norman Starink. I have all of his materials, including photos, logs, letters from the government, mess hall things, from their tour to New Zealand. (They also stopped in Fiji and Australia.) What you may not know is that his flight home to Canada set the still standing world record for 4 engine non-stop flight. So a very important trip indeed. I would be very happy to share those. It was a highlight of my Dad's life and we went through his slides annually for years in wonder. When I came to New Zealand myself, 50 years later, I tried to learn more about the response there, but was unable. Terrific to find this forum and see your interest. Julie
Hello Julie, I really enjoyed the NZ SF Natcon when you were Guest of Honour several years ago. I think I was chatting with Roger then when he mentioned the Argus visit, so I sent you this link (as my memory retains odd things, apparently!)
This forum can't host photos directly unfortunately, are those interesting materials currently available on a sharing site like Photobucket or Flickr?