Post by kiwiwreckdiver on Mar 4, 2019 22:47:36 GMT 12
Hi gents trying to compile a list of war time firing ranges for the Airforce and army I'm especially trying to find out which of the beaches near Clevedon, Auckland was used and bomb and rocket firing from Ardmore Corsairs. Cheers
Post by kiwiwreckdiver on Mar 5, 2019 16:55:44 GMT 12
Thanks Dave the amount of fired .50cal iv found down there on the point is insane, ive even seen bloke trying to sell them on Trade me thinking that they are worth some $$ sadly not the case, most of them ive cleaned up they slid straight into the bottom of a .50 case.
I have checked the index for Vols 1 and 2 but gunnery/bomb ranges do seem to be listed. Maybe a new list needs to be started. i can see from our front window the poles that held a bombing target for Tiger Months out of Wheunapai , opposite west harbour marina.
All official firing (air to air and air to ground) as well as bombing ranges were described in earlier versions of the NZ Air Pilot so that civilian pilots did not inadvertently blunder into all the furious and explosive activity. These included firing areas parallel to the coast where air to air firing took place using drogues for targets (or even "splash firing" by fighters with floating seaweed, cloud shadows or prominent white caps could be fired upon). Quite possible that some "splash firing" took place outside official areas, but I imagine that this would have been officially frowned upon. I think the first bombing and air firing ranges in NZ were the ones set up near Birdlings Flat (Kaitorete Spit) for Wigram aircraft, from about 1930 onwards, but there were probably firing ranges set up for Naval aircraft (read Supermarine Walrus) when these were introduced to service on the NZ Station in 1936, and the Navy probably already had established ranges for naval guns (and the Army would have had their own ranges for small arms, field artillery, and the first A/A guns from about 1935 (two located in Auckland [Narrow Neck?], and two at Wellington - South Island undefended!) These were, I think, the standard British 3 inch Heavy A/A gun, mounted on a 4-wheel carriage and with their own tractor unit. These four guns were sent to Fiji early in the Pacific war, thus leaving New Zealand bereft of any dedicated A/A guns (except those mounted on Allied warships in vicinity). David D
Thanks Dave , Maybe the gunnery range list can grow by people just adding the ones they know like Army Range kauraunga Valley near Thames still labelled as a danger spot in survey maps of the 1950/60 era US Army range in from Wellsford , the road name is somewhere in the file. and still active are the 25yd range at Whenuapai , and larger ones at Whangaparoa and Ardmore while the Kaipara weapons range has plenty of non Air Force activity.
Have a look at the wartime aeronautical charts. I have one of the southern part of the North Island (admittedly it is a fabric print as a cushion cover) and it shows ranges offshore at Nelson, Grassmere (total 4) Flat Point Wairarapa, Otaki (3), Levin, and four off Ohakea.