226 episodes

The Wings Over New Zealand Show is all about New Zealand's aviation scene, past and present and the people involved - from the current RNZAF and Air Force veterans, to airshows and warbirds, to airlines, agricultural aviation, recreational flying, history and much more.

The Wings Over New Zealand Show Dave Homewood

    • Aviation
    • 5.0, 10 Ratings

The Wings Over New Zealand Show is all about New Zealand's aviation scene, past and present and the people involved - from the current RNZAF and Air Force veterans, to airshows and warbirds, to airlines, agricultural aviation, recreational flying, history and much more.

    WONZ 225 – Lou Larsen – Rukuhia Graveyard

    WONZ 225 – Lou Larsen – Rukuhia Graveyard

    Guest: Lou Larsen

    Host: Dave Homewood

    Recorded: 17th of December 2019

    Released: 18th of July 2020

    Duration: 1 hour 9 minutes 43 seconds

    In this episode Dave Homewood sits down with Lou Larsen, the adopted son of the late Rukuhia scrap dealer Jim Larsen. The Larsen family owned the aluminium smelting business situated on the edge of former RNZAF Station Rukuhia, now Hamilton Airport, in the Waikato. Jim Larsen bought up over 500 surplus RNZAF aeroplanes – P-40 Warhawks and Kittyhawks, Corsairs, Hudsons, Venturas, Avengers, Catalinas, etc., and they were cut up and smelted to make aluminium ingots.

    Lou was a child there when this began and over the twenty year period of the operation he grew up literally amongst the old aeroplanes, and got involved in the smelting process himself.

    The following photos were taken by Dave Jenkinson, and were kindly supplied by Warwick Jones of the Royal Aeronautical Society’s Hamilton Branch. They depict scenes at the Larsen aircraft graveyard.

    NB: The music at the end of this episode is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

    • 1 hr 9 min
    WONZ 224 – Laurie Hamlet

    WONZ 224 – Laurie Hamlet

    Guest: WWII veteran Cpl John Lawrence Ernest Hamlet (known as Laurie), NZ416754, RNZAF Instrument Repairer

    Host: Dave Homewood

    Recorded: 30th of November 2019

    Released: 5th of July 2020

    Duration: 1 hour 28 minutes 24 seconds

    In this episode Dave Homewood chats with Laurie Hamlet, who was born and grew up in Auckland. Before the war he was apprenticed to an auto-electrician firm. In December 1941 he joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force, and was to train at RNZAF Station Harewood in Christchurch for his recruit training course, and then was posted to RNZAF Station Hobsonville, in Auckland, to undergo training as an Instrument Repairer.

    Following completion of his instruments course at Hobsonville he stayed on at that station at the Aircraft Assembly Unit, and worked on assembling aircraft that were arriving from overseas by ship in the Port of Auckland for service with the RNZAF. These included the last Hawker Hind to arrive in New Zealand, and he also worked on assembling Lockheed Hudsons and Curtiss P-40 Kittyhawks.

    He was then posted back to Harewood where he continued to assemble Curtiss P-40’s which were now also arriving from the US factories via the Port of Lyttleton.

    Laurie’s next posting was to RNZAF Station Whenuapai in late 1942 to join No. 15 (Fighter) Squadron who were at that time preparing to depart for Tonga. They were the first RNZAF fighter squadron to deploy to the South-West Pacific.

    The squadron went up by ship and they took over an ex-USAAF squadron of P-40E’s, which had not been looked after very well. The Kiwis grounded the aircraft and gave them a good going over to get them up to RNZAF standards. The squadron then began training with the aircraft, and preparing to move over to Espiritu Santo.

    Laurie served with No. 15 (F) Squadron in Fiji, Santo and at Kukum Field at Guadalcanal. He was then returned to New Zealand and was posted to the Maintenance Wing of No. 2 Service Flying Training School, at RNZAF Station Woodbourne.

    He then spent short stints in the Instrument Sections at RNZAF Station Ohakea, and No. 1 Repair Depot at RNZAF Station Hamilton.

    Then another Pacific posting came, and Laurie joined No. 5 (Flying Boat) Squadron at Luganville on the Segond Channel at Espiritu Santo. However he was placed into the squadron detachment at Funafuti in the Ellice Islands (now Tuvalu). He was working on Consolidated PBY-5 Catalina flying boats in this squadron.

    Laurie’s last posting was to RNZAF Station Ardmore, and was working on Chance Vought F4U Corsairs there till the end of the war and into 1946 before being demobbed.

    He then returned to his auto-electrician trade. Then in 1967 he joined Air New Zealand. He worked on the Lockheed Electra, the Douglas DC-8’s, the McDonnell Douglas DC-10’s, the Boeing 747’s and the 767’s. He retired in 1989.

    The following photos are from Laurie Hamlet’s personal collection:

    A No. 15 (Fighter) Squadron P-40 somewhere in the Pacific

    Laurie Hamlet in 1942

    Laurie’s course mates at Harewood during his Initial Training Wing induction

    Names on the back of the above Harewood course photo

    No. 15 (Fighter) Squadron P-40E’s and Harvards at Whenuapai

    One of the P-40’s that No. 15 Squadron took over in Tonga – see here dug in purposely in preparation for an impending cyclone


    • 1 hr 28 min
    WONZ 223 – Typhoon Legacy 2020

    WONZ 223 – Typhoon Legacy 2020

    Guests: Ian Slater, Cameron Wallace, Graham Allan and Martin Oldfield

    Host: Dave Homewood

    Recorded:  7th of June 2020 (6th of June 2020 in Canada)

    Released: 7th of June 2020

    Duration:  1 hour 6 minutes 26 seconds

    In this episode Dave Homewood catches up with Ian Slater of Typhoon Legacy Co. Ltd in Canada and gets an update on the truly exciting restoration of the Hawker Typhoon JP843. Joining Ian in this episode are team members Cam Wallace (Aircraft Maintenance Engineer ), Graham Allan (Aircraft Maintenance Engineer and research guru) and Martin Oldfield (Design Engineer).

    We hear about the progress that has happened since the last time the Typhoon project featured on the WONZ Show, and the current status and happenings.

    Quick Links:

    •  The Typhoon Legacy Co. Ltd Website

    •  The Typhoon Legacy Facebook Page

    •  The previous WONZ Show – Episode 108: Typhoon Legacy

    Hawker Typhoon JP843

    Ian Slater – Project Lead

    Left to Right: Graham Allan, Martin Oldfield and Cam Wallace

    The fuselage fixture (Image Ian Slater)

    Fin rib production and tooling (Image Ian Slater)

    Monocoque frame sets (airworthy for JP843 and static for the Jet Age Museum in the UK). (Image Ian Slater)

    The Rolls Royce Merlin III, left, and the Napier Sabre(Image Ian Slater)

    Above and below:  The tailwheel assembly that Martin and Ian referred to in the discussion. Ian says, “The item we had problems with is the “T” extrusion shown in the second image, this little part saved the day, and we were able to match it to the profile from the Hawker standards.” (Images Ian Slater)

    Above and below: The wing that the team found thanks to a Facebook post after its arrival at the workshop. (Images Ian Slater)

    NB: The music at the end of this episode is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

    • 1 hr 6 min
    WONZ 222 – The Forum 6 – Virtual Forum Meet 1

    WONZ 222 – The Forum 6 – Virtual Forum Meet 1

    Guest Speakers: Mike Nicholls, James Kightly and Charles Davis

    Host: Dave Homewood, with Technical Support from Phil Treweek

    Recorded:  17th of May 2020

    Released: 1st of June 2020

    Duration:  1 hour 47 minutes 1 seconds

    In this episode Dave Homewood hosts the first ever WONZ Virtual Forum Meet, via Zoom, as a result of the Covid 19 lockdown. With everyone in isolation and major travel restrictions in place at the time of conception, the usual style of a WONZ Forum Meet was out of the question, but thanks to Zoom it can now happen online.

    In this experimental Virtual Forum Meet there were three main speakers with different topics. They were:

    Mike Nicholls (with John Saunders) on the John Smith Collection

    James Kightly on the Archaeological Survey of a Brewster Buffalo crash site in Australia

    Charles Davis on the history of the BAC167 Strikemaster, and on his own example

    There’s also a video version which is probably better to view than listening to the podcast, click below.

    The music at the end of the audio version is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

    Quick Links:

    •  The John Smith Collection Thread on WONZ

    •  Buffalo Stories from Vintage Aero Writer

    • Strikemaster 72 on Facebook

    NB: The music at the end of this episode is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

    • 1 hr 47 min
    WONZ 221 – Eddie Leaf

    WONZ 221 – Eddie Leaf

    Guest: Edward Leaf, Air Gunner

    Host: Dave Homewood

    Recorded: 6th of December 2019

    Released: 2nd of May 2020

    Duration:  53 minutes 24 seconds

    In this episode Dave Homewood chats with WWII Air Gunner Eddie Leaf, who served with the Royal Air Force in Vickers Wellingtons, Short Stirlings, Handley Page Halifax and Avro Lancasters.

    Eddie was born in the UK but grew up in the USA during the Depression years, and returned to Britain before joining the RAF. Postwar he moved to New Zealand.

    His daughter Christine also sits in to help Eddie with his fading memories.

    Eddie’s wartime bomber crew on No. 90 Squadron in the Summer of 1943: Left to right are Roy Mitchell (Mid-Upper Gunner), Harry Sherman (Wireless Operator), Eddie Leaf (Rear Gunner), Charles Corley DFC (Pilot), Bob Ludham (Flight Engineer), Arthur Beresford (Bomb Aimer) and Cyril Paul (Navigator). From Eddie Leaf’s Collection.

    Eddie Leaf during his RAF days. From Eddie Leaf’s Collection.

    A photo of the English-born members of the New Zealand Bomber Command Association who were treated to a trip back to the UK to tour museums and visit the Bomber Command Memorial. Here they were visiting the Avro Lancaster ‘Just Jane’ at East Kirkby. Left to right are Harold Panton, owner of ‘Just Jane’, Eddie Leaf, Des Hall, ?, Wally Halliwell, Harry Cammish and Doug Williamson. From Eddie Leaf’s Collection.

    Eddie Leaf, standing left, with his daughter Christine, talks with Ron Mayhill (back to camera) and Jonathon Pote, with Keith Boles DFC in the foreground at an NZBCA veterans morning tea in December 2019.Photo Dave Homewood

    Eddie greeting Keith, with Ron and Christine looking on. Photo Dave Homewood

    NB: The music at the end of this episode is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

    • 53 min
    WONZ 220 – Neville Worsley

    WONZ 220 – Neville Worsley

    Guest: Neville Worsley

    Host: Dave Homewood

    Recorded: 9th of February 2020

    Released: 17th of April 2020

    Duration:  51 minutes 4 seconds

    In this episode Dave Homewood chats with longtime pilot Neville Worsley about his long career in flying as a commercial pilot in aerial topdressing and tourist flying, and his hobby as a recreational pilot and sport flyer.

    Neville flew all sorts of topdressing aeroplanes including the early Fletcher, the Airtruk, the Beaver and the Douglas DC-3 all around New Zealand. In the tourism industry he flew out of Rotorua in the Tiger Moth and Pitts S2. He has also test flown a lot of aeroplanes among the 80 or so different types he has flown.

    He and his sons fly an Acro Sport II ZK-CAW these days. Neville is a keen member of the Sport Aircraft Association of New Zealand, the Hawera Aero Club and the Tiger Moth Club of New Zealand.

    This was one of those recordings where the opportunity arose and we grabbed it while we could. The venue was the Hawera Aero Club rooms, where unfortunately there was a little background noise from other club members and visiting pilots. But it was worth getting Neville’s story recorded regardless.

    Here is a selection of photos from Neville’s career, thanks to Bernice Hintz and Les Worsley for kindly supplying them. All photos are copyright Neville Worsley.

    Neville Worsley preflight checking the Acro Sport II ZK-CAW

    Neville with de Havilland DH82a Tiger Moth ZK-BCI

    Neville in Piper PA-18A Super Cub ZK-BOX at Stratford in 1962

    Neville climbing into an Air Contracts DHC-2 Beaver

    Fieldair Beaver ZK-CZO in the snow

    Neville with DC-3 topdresser ZK-AWO at Woodbourne

    Neville with DC-3 topdresser ZK-APB

    Checking the oil on a DC-3

    Neville dropping a load of superphosphate from ZK-AWO near Napier

    A Fieldair DC-3 dropping its load on a hilltop

    Neville in de Havilland DH89B Dominie ZK-AKY

    Neville, left, when flying tourists from Rotorua to White Island

    Neville with the Acro Sport II biplane ZK-CAW at Dannevirke

    Neville with Vans RV-4 ZK-RVG

    Neville with his sons and ZK-CAW at Taumaranui

    NB: The music at the end of this episode is Wild Flower by Joakim Karud

    • 51 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

Jonsey from Oz ,

Excellent podcast.

Dave Homewood is to commended for producing a great episode every time, Listening to the history and stories from ex defence members across New Zealand and some of Australia is enjoyable.

Keep up the good work !

GhostFlyerOz ,

Great podcast!

Dave Homewood does a fantastic job with this podcast - great interviews covering a wide range of military warbird aviation with a distinctly New Zealand (and Aussie) flavour. Anyone with an interest in WWII aviation from the “Down Under” perspective will thoroughly enjoy hearing Dave’s fascinating conversations with war veterans, warbird pilots, tours through aviation museums and so much more. If you have the time, head back through the back episodes from #33 to listen to the series of interviews with Noel Kruse ... you won’t be disappointed!

OldCmp ,


I always enjoy listening to Dave's interviews with people associated with aviation, particularly military themes. Dave's natural interviewing style brings out great stories from his subjects, he's happy to let them run rather than cut them short to fit a timeslot which is a great advantage. The breadth of subject matter is breathtaking and I am particularly enjoying the Wings Over Australia stories. These are true stories told by those who were there.
It's a must for anyone interested in vintage aviation.

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