Story: Second World War

New Zealand trainee airmen perform a haka in Vancouver

New Zealand trainee airmen perform a haka in Vancouver

These New Zealanders have just arrived in Vancouver, Canada, in November 1940 for training as part of the Empire Air Training Scheme. The scheme had been set up the previous year when it was realised that Britain desperately needed more trained air crew. It was agreed that the dominions would provide a number of air crew each year. The initial training was done in New Zealand and training was usually completed in Canada. By the time the scheme ended in March 1945 New Zealand had contributed 7,002 trained men, of whom 2,220 were pilots. Some of them served in seven 'New Zealand' squadrons within Britain's Royal Air Force (RAF).

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Alexander Turnbull Library, War History Collection (DA-01514)
Reference: DA-00661-F

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Ian McGibbon, 'Second World War - New Zealand’s involvement', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 20 June 2024)

Story by Ian McGibbon, published 20 Jun 2012, updated 1 May 2016