17 January 2019
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Established 2005
Vickers Viscount Network
A Virtual Museum dedicated to the Vickers-Armstrongs VC2 Viscount
   

Viscount c/n 283

Operational Record

Photo of Viscount c/n 283
New Zealand National Airways Corp (NAC)


New Zealand flag New Zealand

This V.807 series Viscount was built for
New Zealand National Airways Corp (NAC) as ZK-BRF

It first flew on Tuesday, 24 February 1959 at Weybridge, Surrey, England powered by Rolls-Royce Dart 520 engines.


Photo of Viscount c/n 283
Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc


New Zealand flag New Zealand

Its final owner/operator was
Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc as ZK-BRF.

Its fate:-
Withdrawn from service by New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC) and stored at Christchurch, New Zealand 12 July 1974.

Donated to the Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc 10 April 1975 and preserved at the Ferrymead Museum of Science and Technology, Christchurch, New Zealand.

Transferred to Air New Zealand's facility at Harewood, New Zealand for further restoration 11 December 1993. Returned to Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc for continuation of the restoration 28 January 2000. Moved into the new museum building to continue the restoration under cover 3 March 2001. Earthquakes in 2010 and 2011 resulted in damage to the museum buildings. Structural repairs carried out in 2015 after insurnace claims were eventually settled. Building handed back to the museum in October 2015 and reopened in November 2015.


Operational record
Photo of New Zealand National Airways Corp (NAC) Viscount ZK-BRF

Country of Registration New Zealand

March 1959 to April 1975

New Zealand National Airways Corp (NAC)

ZK-BRF - c/n 283 - a V.807 series Viscount
New Zealand registered

24 February 1959
First flight from Weybridge Airfield, Surrey, England.

It landed at Wisley Airfield, Surrey, England for fitting out and test flying as the runway at Weybridge was too short for a completed aircraft to takeoff.

David Carter illustration of New Zealand National Airways Corporation Viscount ZK-BRF

Viscount illustrations by David Carter


12 March 1959
Handed over to New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC) named as 'City of Christchurch'.

It was fitted with Rolls-Royce Dart RDa6 Mark 510 engines. The cabin seating was configured for 60 passengers

It then departed from Wisley Airfield, Surrey, England to Blackbushe Airport, Surrey, England flown by Captains L J Ransom, C A Merrington and J H Register.

When the NAC crew were at Wisley they met up with some personnel from Aer Lingus. Before they departed they noticed that a small shamrock had been painted on the starboard nose undercarriage door of their aircraft as a sign of good luck. This shamrock stayed on the aircraft throughout its life and even now is proudly displayed on it at the Ferrymead Museum.

14 March 1959
Departed from Blackbushe Airport, Hampshire, England on delivery to New Zealand.

15 March 1959
Noted at Beirut Airport, Lebanon during the delivery flight to New Zealand.

Arrived at Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand.
Arrived at Harewood Airport, Christchurch,
New Zealand

23 March 1959
Arrived at Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand on delivery.

6 April 1959
Entered service on the inaugural flight to Harewood Airport, Christchurch to Palmerston North Airport, New Zealand. The runway at Palmerston North Airport had been extended to accommodate the Viscount operation.

19 July 1959
Landed at Rongotai Airport, Wellington, New Zealand from Whenuapai Airport, Auckland, New Zealand on the first fare paying service to this newly expanded airport with 59 passengers on board. Flight 937 was flown by Captain M D Cullinane and First Officer J W Oakley. Rongatai Airport replaced Paraparaumu Airport for all NAC services.

20 July 1959
Operated the first Viscount service from Rongotai Airport, Wellington to Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand.

Painted in the final New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC) Viscount livery.
New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC)
final Viscount livery

circa 1968
Painted in the New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC) final Viscount livery.

12 July 1974
Withdrawn from service and stored at Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand.

Total time 35,795:05 hours and 32,272 total landings and 30,373 hull pressure cycles.

10 April 1975
Donated to the Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc.

FURTHER READING


The Illustrated history of New Zealand National Airways Corporation
by Richard Waugh, Peter Layne and Graeme McConnell

The Illustrated history of New Zealand National Airways Corporation 1947 - 1978


The delivery of New Zealand’s first Viscount by Peter Layne

The delivery of New Zealand’s first Viscount



Photo of Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc Viscount ZK-BRF

Country of Registration New Zealand

April 1975 to

Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc

ZK-BRF - c/n 283 - a V.807 series Viscount
New Zealand registered

10 April 1975
Donated by New Zealand National Airways Corporation (NAC).

The Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc is a member body of Ferrymead Heritage Park which is owned by the Ferrymead Trust.

Initially preserved in later NAC - New Zealand National Airways Corporation livery.
Initially preserved in the
final NAC livery

Initially preserved in later NAC - New Zealand National Airways Corporation livery but later repainted in an earlier NAC - New Zealand National Airways Corporation livery.

Transferred to Air New Zealand's facility at Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand for further restoration.
Transferred to the Air New Zealand facility at Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand

11 December 1993
Transferred to Air New Zealand's facility at Harewood Airport, Christchurch, New Zealand for further restoration. Technically Air New Zealand still owns ZK-BRF.

When the aircraft arrived at Harewood it had to cross the runway so the transport crew radioed the tower for 'taxi clearance for ZK-BRF on return finals'. They were greeted with the response that they were cleared for an 'immediate' as they must be low on fuel having been away for a number of years.

28 January 2000
Returned to Ferrymead Aeronautical Society Inc for continuation of the restoration.

3 March 2001
Moved into a partially completed building to continue the restoration under cover.

Restoration of the cockpit and interior well advanced.
Restoration of the cockpit
neary complete

September 2006
Noted with the fuselage restoration of the interior, cockpit and external paintwork well advanced.

March 2007
A lot of progress had been made during the previous six months to meet the 22 March 2007 deadline to have the aircraft presentable for a visit of an aviation tour arranged to mark the 60th anniversary of the formation of NAC – New Zealand National Airways Corporation.

60th anniversary of the formation of NAC – New Zealand National Airways Corporation.
60th anniversary of the
formation of NAC

The recent restoration activity was intended to get the aircraft as externally complete as possible and resulted in most of the wings, tail and engines being fitted. The engines are mostly only cores but are sufficient to hold the props. However plans are in place to get one as externally complete as possible.

The lower areas of the aircraft had also been repainted in a silver paint as used on Hyundai cars. While it is not like the original mirror finish it is pleasing to the eye and a lot better than the previously used grey paint.

2008- 2010
Work continues restoring small parts in normally unseen areas of the aircraft to a very high standard.

RESTORATION
Follow the progress of the restoration of this aircraft with Denys Jones.

ZK-BRF restoration progress


4 September 2010
A strong earthquake near to Christchurch shifted the Viscount on its steel mounting pads but with no subsequent damage. It was left in the new position.

Distorted railway tracks in the museum grounds illustrated the power of the tremors.
Distorted railway tracks
at the museum

22 February 2011
At 1 PM local time another earthquake occurred with a magnitude of 6.2 on the richter scale which resulted in severe damage to buildings in the city and sadly the loss of hundreds of lives.

The Viscount moved on its floor blocks and was covered in a thick layer of dust. The starboard wing tip came in contact with the wall and subsequent tremors have caused more damage to this part, which is not that strong anyway, as it is non-structural. Distorted railway tracks in the museum grounds illustrated the power of the tremors.

9 June 2011
To date, there have been nearly 7,000 tremors or aftershocks which clearly indicates the amount of seismic activity that is still going on underground. The Viscount continues to move slightly with each tremor, without causing too much damage elsewhere.

2015
Structural repairs carried out to building housing the Viscount and Fokker Friendship ZK-BXG.

October 2015
Structural repairs completed and the building handed back to the museum.

November 2015
Museum building reopened to the public.


Photo of BEA - British European Airways Viscount G-AOJC

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This website has been designed, built and is maintained by Geoff Blampied, Norwich, Norfolk, England.