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Air Force Museum Blog

A tale from the clothing store – Kit Bags

By Jason Sim | 02/08/2018

Down the back of the Museum, past the archives, behind the hangars, tucked into a corner, lies the clothing store. Over the past few months we have been busy upgrading the housing and updating the records of the many objects held within. The clothing store consists of seven environmentally-controlled rooms which are home to uniforms,…

Donation 101: Donating items to the Air Force Museum Collection

By Emma Johnson | 01/08/2018

Have you ever considered donating an item to the Air Force Museum?  Donating to the Museum is a rewarding experience for many people, but did you know it’s a legal transaction? When someone donates an item to the Museum, a change of ownership is required. It’s a relatively straightforward process, but not quite as simple…

Education in an ejector seat

By Chris Davey | 30/07/2018

Although the Air Force Museum of New Zealand is best known for our military aircraft collection, we are not just about aeroplanes. Your students could be learning in a real life raft, or be educated in an ejector seat!  Located on the former air base at Wigram, Christchurch we invite our visitors to discover the…

More than a library

By Louisa Hormann | 12/07/2018

In the latest From the Reading Room blog, join us for a behind the scenes look at the Air Force Museum’s research facility, learn about its history, and find out how our archive is used by staff and researchers alike.   Holding what is probably the largest collection of First World War aviation books in…

Military Chocolate

By Murray McGuigan | 07/07/2018

Rations – ‘Military Chocolate’. From the Collection of the Air Force Museum of New Zealand. With fat and sugar delivering caloric clout, and cocoa solids bringing caffeine – and alertness – to the party, it’s no wonder that chocolate (or sometimes just cocoa) has long been a staple of military ration packs – including those…

Women at War by D.O.W. Hall

By Louisa Hormann | 19/06/2018

This year’s 125th anniversary of women’s suffrage in Aotearoa has got us thinking about the influence gender equality has had on women serving in the New Zealand Armed Forces. Louisa Hormann of the Research Team discusses Women at War by D.O.W. Hall, and military roles for women in wartime New Zealand. New Zealand in the…

RAF Centenary Air Show

By Simon Moody | 13/06/2018

On Sunday 10 June, the Air Force Museum of New Zealand attended an air show overseas for the very first time as exhibitors, as part of the RAF Centenary Air Show at RAF Cosford in England. We travelled all the way to the other side of the world courtesy of our friends at No. 40…

Electric Clothing

By Murray McGuigan | 11/06/2018

Late autumn; when leaves that were recently picture-perfect are clogging every drain in sight, and you’re forced to walk through small lakes that form around them. It’s the time of year when you quickly remember that damp footwear brings a misery all of its own – sure, you’re not going to get Trench Foot in…

Wartime Knitting Revived

By Michelle Sim | 06/06/2018

When Christchurch City Librarian Kat Moody was looking for inspiration after taking up knitting again, her husband knew just where to look. Simon, who happens to be the Research Curator here at the Air Force Museum, retrieved some World War Two ‘comforts’ patterns from our archives, and took some copies for her. Having seen such…

Everest Flight, 1945: a New Zealand pilot and the new route up Everest

By Louisa Hormann | 30/05/2018

Our Research Team receive all kinds of public enquiries, and the questions we’re asked can lead us on some interesting paths – and even on mountain treks! This is the story of a Kiwi airman whose wartime reconnaissance photographs helped develop the safer, second route to the summit of Mount Everest. RAF photographic reconnaissance Mosquito…

Hudson under attack

By Matthew O'Sullivan | 27/04/2018

No. 3 Squadron was involved in an epic struggle for life over the Pacific Ocean just four days after arriving on Guadalcanal in 1942. Flying Officer George Gudsell was captain of a Hudson on patrol when he spotted a Japanese naval task force south of Vella Lavella Island (Solomon Is.). When he flew closer to…

Anzac Day Over the Decades

By Air Force Museum | 24/04/2018

Since Anzac Day was marked for the first time in 1916, Kiwis and Australians around the world have gathered to reflect on New Zealand and Australia’s national day of remembrance. The day holds special significance, because it is an opportunity to remember and honour the service and sacrifice of those who have gone before us. The Museum archives unit documents how…

Military Headgear Conservation

By Murray McGuigan | 23/04/2018

Headgear, usually in the form of hats, helmets or headdresses, has long been part of military dress, fulfilling roles of protection, insulation, identification and decoration. For civilians too, the wearing of hats in public was practically ubiquitous until well into the 20th Century, and hatters and milliners did a brisk trade. As a result, headgear…

Kiwis in Combat – Flying the Meteor with the Australians in Korea

By Simon Moody | 23/04/2018

This is the story of two New Zealanders and one epic battle they fought alongside Australian pilots in true ANZAC spirit. In 1950, the Cold War heated up when conflict between North and South Korea brought the United Nations (UN) into the struggle. China later joined the war in support of the faltering North Koreans.…

I Would Not Step Back by Hilary Pedersen and associated writers

By Louisa Hormann | 20/04/2018

“I Would Not Step Back…” by Hilary Pedersen et al., Phil Lamason Heritage Centre Trust (Dannevirke) 2017. ‘The wagon was jammed with 96 men, a number which,  in the height of summer, and the only ventilation about a 2sq foot window, appeared disastrous. But I managed to exert some authority, and like a chess board…

The Centenary of the RAF

By Simon Moody | 28/03/2018

Thousands of New Zealand airmen, like the Kiwis in this No. 75 (NZ) Squadron crew, served with the RAF during World War Two. Image ref: MUS9809010 © Air Force Museum of New Zealand. A Century of Service On 1 April, the Royal Air Force (RAF) will celebrate one hundred years as the world’s first independent…

Clothing Store_Stored Shoes_AFM

How do we slow the signs of aging?

By Moya Montgomery | 26/03/2018

While this may sound like a skin care ad, it’s not – this is preventative conservation museum-style. When it comes to slowing the aging process of our clothing collection at the Air Force Museum there are several principles we follow – it is all about preventing damage, without the use of any anti-aging miracle creams.…

The Flyer by Martin Francis

The Flyer by Martin Francis

By Louisa Hormann | 23/03/2018

The Flyer: British Culture and the Royal Air Force 1939–1945 by Martin Francis, Oxford University Press (New York) 2008. Re-reading the RAF: cultural imaginings of the flyer The flyer – dashing youth, fortune hunter, chivalrous adventurer, city destroyer and defender. Given the popular appeal and significant wartime role of the RAF flyer between 1939 and…

RNZAF Andover Transport Aircraft In Mogadishu

RNZAF Stories: Mogadishu Memories

By Simon Moody | 30/01/2018

In January 1993 three RNZAF Andover transport aircraft and their crews from No. 42 Squadron were deployed to Mogadishu, Somalia. During the 1990s, the RNZAF was deployed to several war-torn regions of the world as peacekeepers and sources of humanitarian relief, a role they still fulfil today. Torn apart by civil war between local warlords and…

Neville Forsyth Harston Photo

War in the Air Exhibition – An Interesting Pilot

By Simon Moody | 27/11/2017

During the research for our War in the Air Exhibition on the First World War, several interesting and sometimes odd stories came to light. One of these lighter moments concerned Neville Harston of Hawkes Bay, who certainly stood out from the crowd.

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