Originally formed in Christchurch in 1959 by a small group of enthusiasts the organisation, which became known as the New Zealand Antique Arms Association, grew over the ensuing 50 years to boast a membership of some 1000 individuals, spread amongst 12 branches throughout NZ. With this expansion came also a greater diversity of collecting interests, and to better reflect this the name was changed to the New Zealand Antique & Historical Arms Association.
Collecting interests range from weapons and associated equipment of all nations from the earliest times to the present day, with perhaps the greatest field of interest being that which is associated with military history. Many collections however do not include firearms or weapons of any kind, but feature instead such items as uniforms, medals, badges, powder flasks, ammunition and historical documents. From the beginning a high standard of conduct has been expected of members, with the result that the Association enjoys good standing with government and police, and membership has come to be seen as a helpful pre-requisite to obtaining firearms licence endorsements.
Shooting is a recognised Association activity, usually conducted at branch level, however there is also an annual national shoot where members from all regions compete and an inter branch postal shoot. Both original and reproduction arms are used in these events.
Auctions, gun shows and other trading events occur on a regular basis throughout the year, both at National and branch level, which provides opportunity for members to dispose of items or add to their collection.
Membership is available to any person who is over the age of sixteen and meets the requirements of good character. Prospective members join through a branch having undertaken a period of activity with the branch before their names are put forward for full association membership. New applicants for membership are approved at the twice yearly general meetings of the Association, however they receive full membership privileges during this probationary period. These include access to all Association auctions and events together with the quarterly magazine “The Gazette” and monthly e-gazette for those with e-mail.
Interested in Joining?
Contact the National Administration Office by email outlining your interests and location. Your details will be forwarded to your local Branch, and you will be invited to their next meeting.
For details of a branch near you visit the branches page.