VH-UBB    de Havilland D.H.83 Fox Moth                            (c/n  4090)

                                       The three photos above and below came from the family album of Leon Hides and were taken
                                       at Port Moresby, circa 1939.    Ex G-ACRK, this Fox Moth was acquired by W.R. Carpenter
                                       and Co. of Salamaua, New Guinea in October 1935.  This early rego was way out of sequence
                                       as, when the Civil Aviation Branch of the Dept of Defence started issuing civil registrations in
                                       1921, the double last-two regos were deemed 'not to be allocated'.  This rule was rescinded
                                       in the early 1930s and hence this Fox Moth became -UBB.    The aircraft had had an interesting
                                       history before arriving in Australia.  Its original owner was John Grierson of Rochester who named
                                       it "Robert Bruce".    It had been specially modified with Short Bros floats for an England to Canada
                                       flight via Iceland and the Greenland Ice Cap in July 1934.   However, it was damaged at Reykjavik,
                                       Iceland and Grierson returned to England with damaged parts for repair. The flight was recommenced
                                       a month later and arrived in Ottawa on 30 August 1934.      It crashed in the Ottawa River on tests
                                        near Rockcliffe, Ottawa on 6 September 1934; was repaired and arrived in New York later that
                                        month.   When bought by Carpenter it was renamed "Roberta" (see photo # 3 below).  
                                        It passed to Mandated Airlines Ltd in 1936 and was damaged in a forced landing at Bulolo River,
                                        in July 1941, and the remains were destroyed by the Japanese air attack on the region in 1942.
                                        At the foot of the page is a photo from the Wally Civitco collection showing the Fox Moth in
                                        New Guinea as G-ACRK, circa 1935.