RNZAF Base Woodbourne
|RNZAF Base Woodbourne
Tempered and Ready
|Owner||New Zealand Defence Force|
|Operator||Royal New Zealand Air Force|
|Serves||Blenheim, New Zealand|
|Location||Blenheim, New Zealand|
|Elevation AMSL||109 ft / 33 m|
Woodbourne was established in 1939 as the base for No. 2 Service Flying Training School (No.2 SFTS). Also located nearby during World War II were the ground training camps of the Delta. In 1942-43, No. 16 Squadron RNZAF and No. 18 Squadron RNZAF Squadrons flying Curtiss P-40 Warhawks used the satellite Fairhall field. In 1945 No.2 SFTS was closed and the Royal New Zealand Air Force Central Flying School and some ground training units, including the Officers' School of Instruction were relocated to Woodbourne. In 1949, The Aircraft Repair Depot RNZAF was relocated from Ohakea, and in 1951 the Boy Entrant School was established at Woodbourne.
Today, Woodbourne is the Air Force's only support base and has no operational squadrons based there. It shares its runways with the Blenheim civil airport, Woodbourne Airport.
The Ground Training Wing was created in 1995 from existing units at Woodbourne and those relocated from Wigram and Hobsonville, and is responsible for the training of recruits (General Service Training School), initial officer training (Command Training School), trade training (except aircrew, medical and photography training) and command training.
Also at Woodbourne is the Air Force's only heavy maintenance facility for the repair of aircraft airframes, engines and avionics systems. This squadron was responsible for reconditioning airframes of RNZAF aircraft. Formally the Airframe Reconditioning Squadron RNZAF, the unit was commercialised in 1998 and is now managed by SAFE Air Ltd. In 2015 SAFE Air Ltd was purchased by the Airbus Group and it continues to maintain military aircraft. SAFE Air Ltd is currently finishing the last of the Air Force's C-130 Hercules airframe refurbishments. This will see the most highly houred C-130 Hercules (NZ7002) remain in flying service.
Personnel strength around 800
Units based at Woodbourne
- New Zealand Defence Force Military Police
- RNZAF Rescue Fire
- NZDF Physical Training Instructors School
- RNZAF Security Forces
- RNZAF Logistics
- Base Medical
- Airbus Group
- See Bryan E. Young, 'Beckoning Skies'
- Cambidgeairforce.org, The Marlborough Region
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