Village News

Sights set on flight

01 March 2023

Tony Harsant standing in front his model aircraft collection

Ever since he can remember, Pōhutukawa Landing resident Tony Harsant has lived and breathed all things aviation.

“My love for the aircraft industry began at a young age. Living in Papakura, the New Zealand Air Force was based at Ardmore and would fly right over our farm. I’d watch in wonder and that was heaven to me.”

As a young man, Tony went on to join the Air Training Core and became a Scout Leader for Capital Musick Air Scouts. But plane spotting has always remained his favourite pastime.

“I have been very fortunate to travel all over the world with my wife Carol, visiting air museums, attending airshows, going on aviation tours and even witnessing a space shuttle take off.

“And I’m very lucky to have a wife that has allowed me to do so. It’s not everyone’s idea of a holiday away!”

As an Associate Member of Warbirds at Ardmore for more than 40 years, Tony has also contributed to the running of New Zealand’s historic aviation museum.

“I’m involved with the visitor’s centre, air displays and tours. But the best part is meeting all the wonderful people that visit, the kids that leave smiling ear-to-ear, and the young men and women who come in, get inspired, and go on to become qualified pilots.

“For me, that’s one way I can give back to the industry I love.”

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