Philip Evers Swindell
The Cessna 180/185 Club of New Zealand was founded by Philip Evers Swindell in the late 1960’s.
He was a most enthusiastic originator and pushed club interests right from when we started as an affiliate of the Cessna 180/185 Owners Club based in the USA.
In January 1984 Philip floated the idea of a NZ group. At that time in NZ getting overseas currency was not a "right" so Philip collected the NZ$$ and bulk applied for US$$ to pay the subs to the US Club.
Philip was chief ramrodder for many years until Dave Ward from Christchurch took over as President for a period. Later Hank Sproull from Queenstown became President and about that time we changed from being a club to a group of enthusiastic owners & pilots of a fine bush flying capable aircraft, meeting regularly at special fly in locations.
Chris Blyth from Taupo followed as the next fearless leader and was then followed again by Philip Evers Swindell from 2004 until 2007. Then became our current President Ken MacDonald of Christchurch.
The majority of our aircraft have a long history of commercial & private flying within New Zealand.
From the 1960’s, these aircraft were used for topdressing (crop dusting) & aerial spraying replacing the earlier Tiger Moths, Austers & Piper Super Cubs.
Up to 14 aircraft were at one time operating in the Mt Cook region as tourist ski planes and in other areas of NZ where rough airstrip capability was required. Later they were regularly used in venison recovery in back country areas.
Our group flys into many of these original bush & top dressing airstrips throughout New Zealand - especially in the South Island where the mountains, isolation and spectacular terrain provides the most demanding flying.
With strips cut out of native bush or constantly changing riverbeds, in the bottom of tight gullies or on steep mountainsides, every fly in that our group organizes provides challenging flying and exhilarating views.
Many years ago, mainly in answer to Piper and other low winged aircraft manufacturers declarations about their various aircraft’s attributes, Cessna brought out a logo of a high wing aircraft in a diving turn with the message “ Cessna – high wing performance – ask any bird!” We tend to agree.
PLEASE REMEMBER, We are no longer a club, we are a group of people that have a similar interest, being one of owning and flying Cessna 180/185's and in that regard we meet several times a year for a social get together over a weekend. Any flying activities entered into by any person is at their own decision and risk and done so, to normal CAA rules directly under the pilot in command of that particular aircraft. You, as “PILOT In Command" will always have the final say on WHERE, WHEN AND HOW YOU FLY YOUR AEROPLANE.
“ Cessna – high wing performance – ask any bird!”
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