Watch: The Allan Byrne Story

Allan Byrne contributed more to surfing than most modern surfers will ever realise. He is considered to be one of New Zealand’s most successful surfers ever, still to this day. In this short film by Clive Neeson, Allan describes in his own words what that era was like.

Last paradise director Clive Neeson with some of his early underwater housings at his home in Oakura. Clive filmed Last Paradise over 45 years, starting when he was just 15. Photo: Derek Morrison

How did he turn flat days at Puni’s Farm into the greatest Pipeline training and board development ground ever? This is what made Allan Byrne and his mates among a special breed in world surfing. Clive Neeson’s award-winning film Last Paradise traces their exploits and adventures from New Zealand to exploding on to the world stage.

In the modern world of fast-paced, low engagement hyper media, it’s easy to lose the context and gravity of what those surfers who went before us achieved. It’s easy to stumble over the past, not pay it enough attention. But Allan Byrne’s story is something every New Zealand surfer should be aware of, take pride in and learn from.

Grab a coffee and hit play.

New Zealand Surf Journal thanks director and writer Clive Neeson and the team at Last Paradise for producing this short film for us.

The award winning feature film Last Paradise, starring Allan Byrne & AJ Hackett is available now at


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