Specialists in research and writing about early New Zealand airlines.

The Pioneering Small Airlines of New Zealand 1945 - 1970

Richard Waugh
Bruce Gavin, Peter Layne & Graeme McConnell

The pioneering small airlines of the 1950s and 1960s, like Fred Ladd's Tourist Air Travel in Auckland and Popeye Lucas's Southern Scenic in Queenstown, were colourful examples of post-war optimism and the 'can do' attitude which changed New Zealand forever.

These were versatile airlines flying Cessnas, DH89 Dominies and Widgeons; opening up new scheduled air services, pioneering tourist flying (notably in Fiordland and the Hauraki Gulf), operating air ambulance and other special charters, developing agricultural work, carrying newspapers and the airmail.

There were many challenges; raising sufficient capital, working with the political regulation and licensing bureaucracy, flying obsolete aircraft, getting enough passengers, dealing with engine failures, overcoming tragic 'prangs' and always coping with the mountainous terrain and turbulent weather.

Illustrated by many rare photographs, this book reveals new and fascinating insights into post-war New Zealand. It describes how these pioneer airlines, and those who ran them, endeared themselves to many - including royalty, farmers, politicians, clergy, tourists and most importantly to thousands of ordinary New Zealanders.

With over 300 photographs (25 in colour) this is the definitive work on New Zealand post-war small airlines and covers more than 60 operators with a focus on the main 11. Appendices include a list of all surviving aircraft in the 11 main chapters from the 1945-1970 era, as at 2003, and a detailed account of the reasons for the controversial 1961 air crash of an Aero Commander on the North Island's highest mountain.

Craig Printing Co, Invercargill, 2003. Available in attractive Soft Cover or collectors Hard Cover. See order page for price and how to order.

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