Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre is honoured to become the guardian of a unique and significant collection of original WW2 New Zealand aircraft, preserved by the late John Smith of Mapua. This collection is widely recognised amongst the international aviation community, but has remained out of sight for decades, housed in a cramped shed since the late 1950s. What is remarkable is that the collection survived at all and it is in tribute to John Smith that his family wish to place these key aircraft together, preserved and on public display.
The aircraft entrusted to Omaka are a de Havilland Mosquito, Curtiss P-40 Kittyhawk ‘Gloria Lyons’ and the Tiger Moth John personally owned and flew. These aircraft will join a Lockheed Hudson, previously gifted by John Smith to Bill Reid, which is already on display as a Pacific jungle wreck in Omaka’s Dangerous Skies exhibition.
Each aircraft requires careful preservation work to be carried out, to both protect the aircraft and to bring it up to display condition. The most complex task is restoring the Mosquito. If you wish to follow its progress, please join the Omaka John Smith Mosquito Project Group on Facebook.
Once completed, these aircraft then need space and an appropriate setting within the museum, so they can be enjoyed by the visiting public. At present, there is insufficient room within the current WW2 Dangerous Skies for all three additions, so our aim is to fund-raise for a major building extension.
TO MAKE A DONATION
We gratefully welcome all donations of whatever size, or you may prefer to make a bequest in your will. Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre is operated by The New Zealand Aviation Museum Trust, which is a registered charitable entity, number CC38773. Donations are therefore tax deductible.
Please contact us for our banking details. Phone +64 3 579 1305 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
All proceeds go towards the future development and expansion of the Omaka Aviation Heritage Centre. For more information, phone (03) 579 1305 or email email@example.com