This Site is dedicated to all those families of the people that have tragically disappeared on flights in and around New Zealand. I  only hope that from all the effort in building this site and from all the effort of those taking part in this venture, that it will bear fruit in bringing ‘closure’ to their memories!
Gavin Grimmer
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North Head Boeings.

April 2013

This topic is not really classed as a missing aircraft and crew, but it is however fascinating. I’ve been inspired to write about it here, after reading a fascinating book: TUNNEL VISION by Martin Butler.

He also has a website

This book starts off talking of the history of the Walsh Brother’s Flying School - the first Flying School in New Zealand. This school imported the first two aircraft ever built  by Boeing, and after the School was sold to the Government at the time, Martin traces what happened to these aircraft, as being pulled apart and stored in the tunnels at the famed Fort Cautley, North Head, Auckland, New Zealand.

Reportedly, Boeing are keen to get these planes back into their possession (understandably) and are prepared to pay what amounts to the value of a brand new ‘Jumbo’ Airliner!

Over the years, there have been many eyewitness accounts of these aircraft being seen in these tunnels, yet from about the mid 1970’s, after some rather major earthworks at North Head, all traces of these tunnels have disappeared!

At first, Fort Cautley, was occupied by the Army, then the Navy, and today is managed as an Historical Place by the Department of Conservation (DOC).

From Martin’s (and other’s) investigation, the Army, Navy, and DOC, all deny that there ever was any other tunnels than what is there today, and continue to put obstacles in the way of anyone that would like to prove otherwise. To understand, you will have to buy and read the book!

I became involved due to my research into the other aircraft as per this web site, as I envisaged that the methods I use could very well help Martin in his quest of twenty years to date!

I contacted Martin to find out what aerial photos he had of North Head and what resolution. He replied that what he had was of poor resolution, so I agreed that I would find out what NZ Aerial Mapping had in their Archives.

This was their reply:


SN 8772 flown 12/11/1987 at 1:25000 scale

SN 8211 flown 17/03/1983 at 1:6000 scale

SN 5783 flown 24/10/1980 at 1:25000 scale

SN 5308 flown 1978/1979 at 1:50000 scale

SN 3800 flown 31/07/1975 at 1:50000 scale

SN 2608 flown 05/04/1973 at 1:3000 scale - great scale for maximum detail

SN 3552 flown 14/04/1972 at 1:24000 scale

SN 1875 flown 28/09/1968 at 1:67000 scale

SN 1392 flown 27/04/1963 at 1:16000 scale

SN 1094 flown 21/10/1959 at 1:5200 scale - very good scale for detail

SN 583 flown 19/09/1950 at 1:16000 scale

SN 143 flown 22/04/1940 at 1:16000 scale - earliest

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