Hudson in Service with Royal New Zealand Air Force

Last revised December 27, 2001


The Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) acquired numerous Hudsons from RAF allotments. These included 54 Mk.IIIs, 73 Mk.IIIAs, six Mk.Vs, and four MK.Vis.  94 of these aircraft received New Zealand serials NZ2001 to NZ2094, whereas seven retained their RAF serials. 

They served with five Bomber Reconnaissance Squadrons (Nos 1, 2, 3, 4, and 9) and with two Transport Squadrons (Nos 40 and 41). In the bomber role, they entered service during 1941 with Nos. 1, 2, and 4 Squadrons.

The RNZAF Hudsons began flying maritime patrols from New Zealand, Fiji, and New Caledonia. Their first action was in late November of 1942 when No. 3 Squadron entered the battle for Guadalcanal. During its tour of duty in the Solomons, No. 3 Squadron's Hudsons gained their first aerial victory on April 2, 1943 and scored its first submarine kill on the next day. They were phased out by No. 3 Squadron in 1944, and were replaced by Lockheed Venturas. In the transport role they served from 1943 until the end of the war.

For RNZAF serial tie-ups with USAAF and RAF serials, look at Darren Crick's RNZAF serial number website.  The RNZAF serials NZ2001 through NZ2036 were from RAF Hudson lots delivered prior to Lend-Lease.  Numbers NZ2037 and later were acquired after Lend-Lease was in effect, and they hence had USAAF serial numbers assigned for administrative purposes.

Sources:


  1. Lockheed's Made-Over Bomber, Freeman Westell, Wings, Vol 26, No. 6, p. 46 (1996).

  2. Lockheed Aircraft Since 1913, Rene J. Francillon, Naval Institute Press, 1987