Specialists in research and writing about early New Zealand airlines.

The Pioneering Story of Gisborne and Hawkes Bay Aviation

Editor: Richard J.Waugh
Contributing authors: John King, David Phillips & Richard Waugh

The picturesque yet isolated Each Coast of the North Island was a pioneer area of New Zealand aviation. Gisborne based East Coast Airways was the first New Zealand airline to be licensed and the first to operate twin engined aircraft, de Havilland DH84 Dragons, from early 1935.

This book tells the adventures of the aviation pioneers - joyriding off beaches, hand-swung propellers, forced landings and a converted tramcar for a passenger terminal. Illustrated by many rare photographs, this story describes how aviation made, and still makes, a significant social and economic impact on provincial New Zealand. The Gisborne-Napier route continues today as the oldest scheduled air service in New Zealand.

Early Risers also contains the story of the restoration of DH84 Dragon ZK-AXI (c/n A2057), a history of the pioneering DH84 Dragons of East Coast Airways and a list of all the original ECA shareholders.

Over 100 photographs (the best collection of DH84 photographs available anywhere), including 16 in colour. Craig Printing Co, Invercargill, 1997. See Order page for price and how to order.

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View a sample inside page from this book here

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