NZ Warbirds

Warbirds on Parade Open Day Sunday 5th June 2022


The New Zealand Warbirds Association is an umbrella body dedicated to the restoration, preservation and operation of service aircraft in full flying condition. Nationwide, they are a family of involved participants who provide a wide range of skills and support necessary to maintain and operate classic aircraft.

Warbirds was originally conceived in 1978 to preserve ex-RNZAF service aircraft only but this has been expanded by the successful introduction of service aircraft from all over the world including Russian, German and Chinese types. British and American aircraft, never seen in service here, also figure prominently. Everything from biplanes to jet fighters!

Service aircraft creates visuals of First World War Camels and Fokkers, the Battle of Britain Spitfires and Messerschmitts, Lancaster, Heinkel and B-17 bombers, Mustangs, Zeros and more. Later types would include Vampires, Migs and Canberras. In the history of military flight, these 'glamour' aircraft represent the front line of a much deeper and broader tradition of service, one that encompasses literally hundreds of types of training, transport and reconnaissance aircraft which have performed, and continue to perform vital duties across the globe.

The New Zealand Warbirds Association does not aim to glorify war at all, but rather, to see some of these grand old military aircraft preserved in flying condition for the enjoyment of all. Who can resist the throb of a Harvard or the sheer romance of a Tiger Moth, the roar of a Mustang or the rush of a jet?

In New Zealand, as in many countries the world over, service aircraft have been the introduction to flying and aviation for thousands of young men (and some women), particularly in times of war. Many such pilots have gone on to establish careers in civilian flying long after their military service so, in many ways, these aircraft form the very backbone of our country's aviation history.