This time at Dwens yard in Waimauku, 20 miles north of Auckland. The old dairy factory used by Dwen now houses Settlers Lodge and thats where this photo came from. The owner says that there are always bits of metal being found in the garden. What was NZINST138 earlier life?
I do not believe there to be a maple leaf at all on the roundel. I think there has been a rectangular panel attached to the skin for some reason to perhaps patch a hole and it seems to be across the top of the roundel with the top part of the red dot on the new panel. It is raised and the shadow of that panel causes the lower part of the red dot to look like it has leaf-like arms, but I'm not convinced. Note the panel is a very similar size to another that is further up the airframe but missing.
It strikes me as very curious as to how two Harvards came to be turned into slides and mounted in such a similar way in two different towns. The Methven one is a very similar design to the Pahiatua mounting. I wonder if the same designer was involved. or was it perhaps more common than I think? Have you ever seen other planes turned into slides like this with the same arrangement?
At last I have located my own Pahiatua Harvard slide photos which were taken in February 2004, sorry they're not all cleaned up and stuff with photoshop, the scanner wasn't too good when I did these off prints.
Note the low fence and the position of the gate entrance look the same. However if it is the same aircraft it has been remounted, and the cowl changed and propellor fitted. The ladder looks the same but the slide is different. A new 1970's house has been built behind it in front of the older buildings. The swing sets have been removed to make way for the sign, etc.
I'm not coinvinced the road isn't there. It was probably narrower back then, and just not seen on this angle as it would have been sunk down, like in my shots.
There are far too many similarities to discount Pahiatua but too many differences to be certain.
I'm glad Dave posted this link in the other Harvard playground thread - it's brought back many memories of growing up in Hawkes Bay.
Firstly the unsolved mystery of the Mahora kindy 3 seater...
Sorry Bruce but it was a converted Tiger, modified to sit an extra kid and even as a four year old attending that kindy I kept telling everyone "no Tigermoth has three seats"! It had the fabric around the fuselage covered in ply to make it last longer and I recall getting in trouble once by hiding in the engine compartment during a break and causing Merry hell for the poor staff as they turned the place upside down looking for their lost scone-grabber! Mum wasn't happy either as my clothes had a few oil stains from that escapade
In my following 6 years the Tiger was there across the fence whilst I attended Mahora school (1970-1976) and at one stage it got an upgraded paint job. I remember taking a walk through the school a couple of years later and saw it had been removed which saddened me... No doubt it had become too run down and a bit unsafe for the kids.
Growing up in a Hawkes Bay I fondly remember playing in the Pahiatua Harvard every time we took a drive that way. Dad was an aviation nut so an occasional detour to Takapau to play in that one was also on the cards. I wonder if there are any photos in our old family albums.....
Like Bruce I have fond memories of playing on the Avenger at Havelock North - what a huge beast it was and I remember being a bit scared of the height from standing on the wings looking down to the grass below, it was a long way down!
In the end this was one of the reasons it was removed by the Jaycees, too many kids were falling off it and breaking limbs, a shame.
I then recall seeing it up a driveway in York road (between Hastings and Flaxmere) with its wings folded at its new owners and often wondered what became of it.
These days I'm keeping the tradition going by taking my own lads to the Pahiatua Harvard every time we pass that way and have a few photos of the old girl from recent years, a great trip down memory lane and I'm so glad it has been restored as it's a neat bit of nostalgia for me