Monday 17 December 2012


De Havilland DH89B Dominie ZK-AKY (c/n 6653) was built by the Brush Coachworks near Leicester in the UK to an RAF order and listed with them as HG654. It was transferred to the RNZAF and arrived in NZ to be taken on charge at Hobsonville as NZ525 on 13-10-1943. It was struck off charge on 02-09-1946 as having been sold to N.Z.N.A.C. It was listed as ZK-AKY on 30-08-1946, named "Tui", and operated the Northland service until being withdrawn on 19-12-1962.
For more on this service see :-
Photograph below was taken at, what looks to me like, Wellington in 1949 and comes from the Ed Coates collection.
It was sold along with spares to Ritchie Air Services Ltd of Te Anau on 19-05-1964. Ritchie became a subsidiary of N Z Tourist Air Travel in December of 1964
Below we see her at Te Anau along with the Tiger Moth ZK-BRC on 17-03-1966, with TAT on its tail and Ritchie Air Service on the fuselage.
Then we see her in the big hangar at Queenstown on 26-12-1974 by which time it was with Mount Cook and Southern Lakes Tourist Co Ltd.
It was sold to Tom Williams of Te Parae (Masterton) on 28-03 1978.
The next four photos are from the Allan Wooller collection and show ZK-AKY.
 on its way from Masterton to Finch's at Rotorua for a C of A renewal in 1978
And two views of it whilst it was in the care of the N Z Sport and Vintage Aviation Society at Masterton wearing pseudo military markings during the 1980's.

 It was leased for a time to White Island Airways of Rotorua before returning to the NZSVAS.
On 28-02-1990 whilst in the circuit at Wigram it collided with the Cessna 172 ZK-BWN - luckily both landing ok.
It undertook an interesting trip up to New Caledonia and return in October of 1995 by which time ownership was with Biplane Adventures Ltd of Wanaka. It then transferred to Croydon Air Services of Mandeville on 18-12-1996 and then to the Croydon Aircraft Co Ltd from 14-02-2001 and remains with them today.
 These three views show her at Timaru on 18-01-2007.

Final view is at Omaka on 10-04-2009.


  1. Somewhere in it;s life was this used/owned by West Coast Airways ?

  2. To the best of my knowledge it was never "Officially" listed to West Coast Airways.
    However there seemed to be a good cross over of aircraft between West Coast Airways, Southern Scenic (of which it was a subsidiary)and NZ Tourist Air Travel to cover maintenance and work load etc.
    Check out Steve's site at :-

  3. It spent time at the Nelson Aero Club after the Dragon was sold.