Glyn Powell's head pops out from beneath a plane carcase draped in sheets and various ragged shapes of cloth. The plane sits on a perch of wooden trestles in a hangar-shaped shed in Drury, built especially to house its transformation.
Glyn fits easily under a big wooden wing, and shuffles towards us across a concrete floor that's a little sawdusty in parts.
A firm handshake, a sheepish grin. He gestures at his baby - aMosquito T43 he's rebuilding completely. He bought it around 25 years ago, thinking he could restore it in five years, then fly it. But he soon realised the glue that held together the all-wood airframe would never pass the flying test.
When Anthony and I visited Les Vincent to see Auster BCK we talked about the RNZAF Mosquitos. He mentioned he was involved in chopping them up and said there was a photo of him poised with axe. Wonder if this last one is him?
With the impending flight of a Mosquito in New Zealand I thought it would be appropriate to post a few Mosquito pictures .
All of these images were taken at Woodbourne when a batch of Mosquitos were being scrapped. Copyright for all pictures is Cliff Horrell from Ashburton . Some have been published before, but it is a scene that could be repeated in the near future if the A4 sale goes bad and the US state department does not approve dispersal to museums....
The Merlin engines and various other parts were removed to Horrells yard in Ashburton where they were broken up.
The Auster should be recognised for what it is: a gentleman's aerial touring carriage and a nice aeroplane.
Post by Dave Homewood on Oct 21, 2012 14:15:47 GMT 12
I'm afraid to say I somehow never picked up on this snippet before, but according to the excellent Aircraft of the Royal New Zealand Air Force by David Duxbury, Ross Ewing and Ross Macpherson (Heinemann, 1987), apparently No. 14 Squadron RNZAF operated four Mosquitoes during 1949.
Does anyone know which four aircraft were on strength with that squadron? And what was their role? The text implies only No. 75 Squadron flew the type operationally, so i assume it had to have been a training role of some sort? Or perhaps as hacks?
I discovered the same via Brendon Deere's Mosquito history. All I can find so far is there were four and the idea was for 14 to be operational like 75 but they ended up converting to Oxfords for multi-engine training.
Here's a few more to add to the pile courtesay Mac Morgan a w/op Nav on 75 Sq and later pretrained pilot.
Station Commander's inspection. No 75 Squadron RNZAF Station Ohakea. L to R Sqn Ldr ? (Squadron Engneer Officer), Sqn leader Mac Baigent DSO DFC AFC (Squadron Commander) Grp Capt A E Clouston DFC AFC (Station Commander), Flt Lt Ray Jeffs (Pilot) Next 3 unknown groundcrew
75 Squadron representation at Royal NZ Aero Club Air Pageant Paraparaumu Airfield 23 November 1947 L to R Flt Lt Mac Morgan AFC (Navigation Leader), Flt Lt Jack Wendon (Pilot), Flt LT Ray Jeffs (Pilot) Sqn Ldr Mac Baigent DSO DFC AFC (Squadron Commander), Flt Lt George Brabyn (Pilot)
Mosquito Ferry flight crews arrival at RNZAF Ohakea L to R Sqn Ldr Mac Baigent DSO DFC AFC (Squadron Commander) Flt Lt Jack Garret (Navigator) Flt Lt Eric Heaton (Pilot)
Air Navigation School RNZAF Station Wigram January 1948 Number 1 Navigation Instructors Course L to R Flt Lt Slim Ormerod DFC, Flt Lt Mac Morgan AFC, Flt Lt Harold Hammond DFC, Flt Lt? Note Mac still wears his original observers badge
Great photos! Close up of the Avenger, the artwork identifies this as NZ2504. Wonder if in the gneral shot this is NZ2504 as well? EDIT: I'd say it is as the prop is sitting the same way as the closeup..
Post by Dave Homewood on Nov 23, 2012 18:55:49 GMT 12
Superb shots Peter, thanks for posting them. Mac Baigent was an interesting character and well loved by all accounts, sadly taken too young too.
That first shot is clearly an inspection by some high ranking officer, so it's interesting to see the mix of FS and SD hats, and the groundcrew not even wearing hats. I wonder if it was impromptu, because in peacetime for an expected inspection you'd surely have an order of the exact dress to be worn? or were they more casual in the 1950's?