The RNZAF operated 299 Oxfords in all between 1938-1954 – more than nearly any other aircraft type. They were made of plywood and fabric and were used for various aspects of advanced air crew training, as well as general reconnaissance, communications and aerial survey work.

Oxford PK286 was built at the Airspeed factory in Portsmouth, England, in 1945. By this late stage of the War the supply of aircraft had outstripped demand. As a result, PK286 was never allocated to an RAF squadron, but instead was returned to Airspeed to be converted into a Consul, the passenger variant, in 1946. It flew for several civilian companies over the next 20 years, before being purchased by the Canada Aviation Museum in 1965.