EXTRACT TAKEN FROM THE REPORT TO THE NEW ZEALAND GOVERNMENT BY THE NEW ZEALAND NAVAL BOARD 1ST APRIL 1957 TO 31ST MARCH 1958.
1. During the crisis of the Battle of the Atlantic, Britain’s vital supply lines were almost severed by a force of submarines, which were essentially surface craft capable of submerging. They were rarely able to cover more than 120 miles a day and they were dependent on surface travel, not only for their mobility but also for the stored power, which enabled them to submerge. Today, nuclear power has produced the true submarine, a vessel designed to operate entirely submerged. It can travel up to 600 miles a day, its endurance is limited only by that of its crew, and it can remain submerged indefinitely.
2. This comparison illustrates one of the major problems, which face the navies of today in their primary concern with the protection of their countries sea borne commerce. Because the Royal New Zealand Navy is so concerned, the New Zealand Naval Board have felt it appropriate in this report to explain this problem, the steps being taken to solve it, and the implications of that solution.
3. We have mentioned the remarkable developments in the propulsion of the modern submarine and it will be evident how this has increased its range, its speed, and the length of time it can remain in a battle area. But at the same time there has been an equally remarkable development in the weapons the submarine can carry. Missiles have transformed the submarine’s role. They have changed it from a warship designed exclusively for the destruction of shipping to a single-unit task force, which can be, employed against land or sea targets.
4. This ominous increase in the submarine’s capacity has provoked a far-reaching search for counter measures. We have had to learn more about the physical nature of the sea. This has involved basic research in which scientists of the Royal New Zealand Naval Research Laboratory have made a contribution out of all proportion to their resources.
5. Increased submarine speeds have demanded a corresponding increase in ship speeds and this has led to improvements in the efficiency of machinery, and research into new types of propulsion. It is essential that these high speeds be maintained in all weather. Developments in hull design have been made, some of which will be seen in our new Whitby frigates, which are exceptionally seaworthy ships in bad weather. We must detect the submarine earlier and at a greater distance from its target. This has meant the development of new and more efficient detection equipment. To attack a faster and more elusive target we need new weapons, and these are being developed.
6. These far-reaching technical improvements hold bright promise for the future. A navy, which has a predominantly anti-submarine role, must possess ships that incorporate the latest developments and this is the reason for the choice of Whitby class ships to replace our present outmoded Loch class frigates. But acquisition of new ships, however essential, is not a simple and clear-cut solution of New Zealand’s maritime defence problem. The revolution, which has taken place in naval warfare, is almost entirely technological, and this has produced a chain reaction of implications, which extends down through the entire naval structure.
7. We need, for example, improved early warning and better detection devices. These have been developed, but they are complex electronic machines. Ships need to generate more power to supply them, to carry mote technicians to service them, and to train men to operate them. This requirement for a higher technical standard at sea in turn demands better training facilities ashore, and we require instructors who are not only masters of their trade but also skilled in the art of instruction. We must accept the fact that the Navy of the future will have few, if any, unskilled men and we cannot therefore relax our entry standards.
8. These advances in technical ability at sea have to be matched by similar improvements ashore. Dockyard maintenance is essential for today’s highly specialised ships. We must not only provide the shore machinery but we must also build a corps of dockyard technicians with skills that have no parallel elsewhere in New Zealand industry.
9. And finally, we must improve living conditions ashore. We have stated earlier that the reply to the new threat has been in technological advances, resulting in the development of new devices, which must somehow be fitted into ships of restricted size. This places a definite limit on the living space available for the ship’s company, at a time when living standards have risen sharply elsewhere. While new materials and new designs of bunks and furniture are all being used to make the most of the space available, they cannot produce a standard of comfort in any sense comparable to that ashore. Especially because we cannot provide this standard for the sailor at sea, we propose to provide it when he comes ashore.
10. These, then, are some of the problems which face the Navy. They spring from the fact that it is not inevitable that any future war will be a nuclear holocaust in which conventional forces will be useless. The retaliatory powers of the free world ensure that aggression on a global scale can be launched only at unacceptable and terrible cost to the aggressor. But local wars can be provoked in which an aggressor can achieve his object piecemeal and without risk of massive retaliation. In these local wars the aggressor can use, or supply, the most advanced versions of what are now termed conventional weapons. Against these, defences arc being developed which we have every reason to believe will be successful. But adequate defence cannot be measured only in terms of the purchase of new equipment; the implications of modern weapons and equipment are reshaping the requirements of the Service.
SECTION I-DEVELOPMENT OF THE ROYAL NEW ZEALAND NAVY
(i) ORGANISATION AND DEVELOPMENT
11. With New Zealand’s remoteness from Europe and Asia it has been recognised that, in a global or local war, New Zealand’s naval effort must be employed in cooperation with other allied forces in the areas where world security is threatened.
12. The forces with which the RNZN will have to operate are well equipped and together form balanced task forces to meet any foreseen threat. To meet these commitments, the RNZN must have ships with the best equipment, which New Zealand’s resources can provide.
13. The major unit of New Zealand’s naval defence contribution will continue to be the modernised cruiser ROYALIST which will shortly have completed 12 months’ service on the Far East Station. Her very modern equipment has enabled ROYALIST to take part in full-scale exercises as an integral part of modern task forces and her performance has done much to enhance the reputation of the RNZN and of New Zealand among our allies.
14. The first two of the new Whitby class frigates, to be named OTAGO and TARANAKI, are now being built and are expected to join the Fleet in 1960. These ships are equipped to deal with practically any type of submarine threat and are by far the most advanced type of vessel of this nature. OTAGO and TARANAKI will replace two of the Loch class frigates, which are now obsolescent and no longer able to play an effective part in the tasks required of them. While these ships have a limited operational role they are also employed on essential sea training, weather-reporting duties, and patrols on the New Zealand Naval Station.
15. Essential modernisation has been carried out in the four Bathurst class minesweepers to enable them to be competent ocean minesweepers.
16. Progress has been made with the modernisation of the naval dockyard at Auckland to enable it to service the modern equipment in the new ships coming into service.
(ii) DEFENCE RESEARCH
(a) Naval Research Laboratory
17. At the end of its second year of full-scale operation, the Naval Research Laboratory is now well established and accepted as an integral part of the Naval Service. Progress has continued along the lines planned and substantial advances have been made in all its main research activities.
18. In June of last year the laboratory moved from its old quarters at Narrow Neck into a new building, which had been erected in the dockyard. Besides removing many of the security problems attendant on the old accommodation, the shift has meant an overall improvement in working facilities and enabled a greater range of projects to be undertaken.
19. Progress has been maintained in the establishment of the laboratory’s Field Station on Great Barrier Island. This station provides facilities for the continuous recording of wave motion, sea state, ocean currents, and the associated potential differences produced by large water movements, density, and temperature, and the seasonal variations of these and other phenomena of interest: Adjustments carried out on the necessary measuring equipment which was placed last year on the sea bed posed some difficult problems and its satisfactory accomplishment is a credit to all concerned. During this operation naval divers set up a record for the RNZN in descending to over 250 ft.
20. The Ministry of Works will complete the buildings very shortly. All the recording equipment is ready for transfer as soon as the buildings are handed over to the laboratory. Although teething troubles may be expected it is hoped that the Field Station will be fully operational and able to provide valuable data by mid-winter.
21. The underwater television camera mentioned in last year’s report proved to have even greater potentialities than was originally envisaged. The work of divers on the seabed can be visually observed from the parent ship by means of the camera. Besides its use in research activities, the camera has proved of inestimable value for other purposes. The assistance it was able to provide the engineers responsible for the repair of a damaged headrace at the Arapuni Hydro-electric Station is an instance of the uses to which this camera can be put. It was able to reveal clearly the extent and nature of the damage, enabling the repair work to be carried out quickly and efficiently.
22. At this stage in the development of the RNZN’s scientific branch, the Director made a visit overseas to consult with similar organisations in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Its value to the research programme in particular and New Zealand defence in general will be inestimable. Only by visits of this nature can an organisation engaged on this type of work keep fully abreast with overseas developments. The liaison so established is invaluable to the country’s defence research programme.
23. The naval research ship RNZFA TUI has continued with practical work in the field of underwater research in both New Zealand and Pacific Islands waters and has provided much valuable data in support of the Naval Research Laboratory’s activities. The work done by this ship has been of value not only to the laboratory but also to the Oceanographic Institute of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research to whom TUI is loaned for a few months each year. In this capacity TUI has made a significant contribution to the work carried out by New Zealand in support of the International Geophysical Year programme.
24. The wisdom of initially concentrating the New Zealand naval research effort on a few important problems directly related to local conditions has been vindicated by the real advances made in these tasks. Worth-while results obtained over the past two years have given the laboratory staff renewed confidence in themselves and justified the New Zealand Naval Board’s action in establishing this new section of the Service.
(b) Defence Scientific Corps
25. The strength of the naval section of the Defence Scientific Corps remains at 10. Four of these officers are engaged in work at the Naval Research Laboratory, Auckland, and the remaining six are completing their overseas training.
(i) HMNZS ROYALIST
26. The cruiser ROYALIST re-commissioned at Auckland on 9 April 1957 and, after a period of self-maintenance and trials in the Auckland area, departed for Sydney on 20 May.
27. After an intensive work-up and exercise programme in the Sydney-Jervis Bay area, the ship joined the Far East Fleet at Singapore on 18 July as New Zealand’s naval contribution to the Far East Strategic Reserve until 16 June 1958.
28. One week after her arrival, ROYALIST carried out an action bombardment against possible terrorist positions inland from Tanjing Lamput.
29. In late August a series of Fleet exercises were carried out in the Hong Kong area and the ship then proceeded via Singapore to Penang for the Merdeka celebrations in connection with the Malayan Proclamation of Independence.
30. A 14-day self-maintenance period at Singapore followed before ROYALIST departed for Hong Kong, Japanese ports, and South Korea with other naval units of the Far East Station.
31. Ports visited during October and November included Yokosuka, Kobe, and Sasebo in Japan, and Inchon, Pusan, and the Island of Paengyong-do in Korea. The ship’s visit to Kobe coincided with the annual port festival, and during this period His Imperial Highness Prince Takamatsu was received on board with due ceremony.’
32. Returning to Hong Kong in mid-November 1957, ROYALIST remained in that area for several weeks before proceeding to Singapore for self-refit and docking.
33. On 20 February; 1958, a two-hour bombardment was carried out in an area to the west of Tanjong Punggai in south-east Johore believed to be occupied by Malayan terrorists.
34. In late February ROYALIST took part in a series of large-scale concentration exercises with other units of the Far East Fleet.
35. At the Singapore naval base on 3 March, ROYALIST was visited by the Prime Minister, the Right Hon. Walter Nash, P.C., M.P.
36. A further series of exercises in the Malayan area took place and the north-east Borneo ports of Sandakan and Jesselton were visited in late March.
(ii) HMNZS KANIERE
37. After being in the South-East Asian area since early 1956, KANIERE took part in a final series of exercises with other ships of the Far East Strategic Reserve extending into the Gulf of Thailand, departing from Singapore on 8 May 1957 for return passage to New Zealand.
38. The ship arrived in Auckland on 29 May, via Cairns, after an absence of 14 months.
39. On completion of refit, trials, and work-up, KANIERE took part in. anti-submarine exercises in the Hauraki Gulf and Tasman Sea in November and December 1957, together with other ships of the RNZN, RAN, and RN. The ships then visited Sydney in company.
40. After a leave and maintenance period in Auckland, KANIERE continued in her training role, visiting the Australian ports of Melbourne, Hobart, Western port, and Launceston in January and February 1958.
41. On 20 March the frigate departed from Auckland for Suva for a programme of sea training of personnel of the Fijian RNVR.
(iii) HMNZS PUKAKI
42. The frigate PUKAKI returned to Auckland on 16 July 1957 after an absence of four months on detached duty with Grapple Squadron at Christmas Island, where the ship carried out weather-reporting duties for the first series of British H-bomb tests in that area. During this period visits were also made to Suva, Papeete, Vavau, Rarotonga, and the outlying Cook Islands of Penrhyn, Manihiki, Rakahanga, and Palmerston.
43. PUKAKI remained in the Auckland area under refit and trials until early October when she again proceeded to Christmas Island for weather-reporting duties in a further British H-bomb test, returning to Auckland via Apia and Samoa on 27 November.
44. With other ships of the RNZN, RN, and RAN and aircraft of the RNZAF and RAAF, PUKAKI took part in a combined maritime exercise in the Tasman Sea between 8 and 11 December 1957. Before her return to Auckland for leave and maintenance, the ship visited Sydney for post-exercise discussions.
45. During a period of training in the Auckland area in January and early February 1958, PUKAKI attended the Waitangi Anniversary celebrations.
46. PUKAKI again departed from Auckland on 14 March for Suva en route to Christmas Island to act in a weather-reporting capacity. Twelve days were spent in Fiji training ratings of the Fijian RNVR.
(iv) HMNZS ROTOITI
47. The frigate ROTOITI, having joined Grapple Squadron at Christmas Island on 29 March 1957 as a weather-reporting ship for the approaching series of British H-bomb tests, remained in that area until 25 June. The ship returned to New Zealand on 16 July.
48. During the above period on detached service, the ship paid visits to Penryhn, Danger, and Aitutaki Islands in the Cook Islands group and to Papeete, Nukualofa, and Suva.
49. After a period of maintenance in the Auckland area, ROTOITI was again detached for weather-reporting duties at Christmas Island between 21 October and 27 November 1957.
50. ROTOITI joined other units of the RNZN, RN, RAN, RNZAF, and RAAF in a large-scale combined maritime exercise in the Tasman Sea between 8 and 11 December. On completion the ship visited Sydney to take part in post-exercise discussions before returning to Auckland for annual refitting and docking.
51. ROTOITI will relieve ROYALIST on the Far East Station in June 1958 as New Zealand’s naval contribution to the Far East Strategic Reserve.
(v) HMS ST. BRIDE’S BAY
52. The British Far East Fleet frigate HMS ST. BRIDE’S BAY departed from New Zealand on 5 June 1957 after three months detached service in New Zealand waters. During that time the ship assisted in the sea training of RNZNVR personnel while the two RNZN frigates PUKAKI and ROTOITI were on weather-reporting duties for British H-bomb tests in the Christmas Island area.
(vi) HMS CARDIGAN BAY
53. The Frigate HMS CARDIGAN BAY, on detached service from the British Far East Fleet, arrived in Auckland on 11 November 1957.
54. The frigate joined RNZN units in basic anti-submarine exercises in the Auckland area and in December took part in combined mid Tasman maritime exercises with forces of the RNZN, RAN, RNZAF, and RAAF, and the British submarines TELEMACHUS and AUROCHS. Before returning to Auckland for the Christmas period, CARDIGAN BAY visited Sydney for post-exercise discussions.
55. Until her final departure for the Far East Station on 21 January 1958, the frigate assisted in the training of RNZNVR and Sea Cadet personnel in the Auckland, Wellington, and Lyttelton areas.
(vii) HMNZS LACHLAN and SURVEYING MOTOR LAUNCHES
56. During April and May 1957, the survey ship HMNZS LACHLAN and her two tenders, HMNZS TAKAPU and TARAPUNGA, completed surveys in the Hawke Bay area and in the port and approaches of New Plymouth.
57. In June and July LACHLAN operated in the Tonga Islands area on the approaches to and in the harbour of Nukualofa, investigating a number of reported shoals on passage. Visits were also made to Suva, Niue, and Apia.
58. From late October, after annual refit and docking, LACHLAN and her tenders surveyed the western approaches to Cook Strait and in the Tasman Bay, New Plymouth, Greymouth, and Westport areas, including the West Coast of the South Island between Farewell Spit and Cape Foulwind.
(viii) HMNZS ENDEAVOUR
59. The Antarctic research ship HMNZS ENDEAVOUR remained in Auckland under maintenance until early May 1957 when she proceeded via Wellington to service the meteorological station at Campbell Island. The ship then visited the Chatham Islands to embark passengers and mail for Wellington.
60. ENDEAVOUR departed from Wellington on 5 June to carry out oceanographic observations en route to Raoul Island in the Kermadec group and to service the meteorological station on that island.
61. After a short maintenance period in Auckland the ship in July transported a number of naval personnel to Sydney together with a quantity of ammunition and general stores for delivery to HMNZS ROYALIST, which was undergoing a work-up in Sydney prior to her departure for the Far East Station.
62. ENDEAVOUR remained in Auckland under refit until November 1957. Visits were made to Gisborne, Picton, Greymouth, Nelson, Wellington, and Dunedin before final departure for the Antarctic on 18 December.
63. ENDEAVOUR arrived in McMurdo Sound on 29 December and remained in that general area until 5 March 1958. During that period the ship and her company were fully employed in the transfer of stores and equipment, carrying out, oceanographic and hydrographic surveys, and in the preservation of Scott’s Hut.
64. On the return passage to New Zealand ENDEAVOUR carried Sir Vivian Fuchs and his trans-Antarctic party accompanied by Sir Edmund Hillary with members of the New Zealand Antarctic Expedition. A quantity of equipment, including Snocats and the expedition’s Auster aircraft, was also carried.
65. At Wellington, ENDEAVOUR’s first port of call on return from McMurdo Sound, an enthusiastic welcome was given to the members of the expedition on their return from the Antarctic. The ship later returned to Auckland via Gisborne.
(ix) HMNZS STAWELL
66. After completion of a docking and self-maintenance period in Auckland in April 1957, the ocean minesweeper STAWELL visited Whangarei for Anzac Day’ commemorations.
67. During May this ship took part in sea training of RNZNVR and Sea Cadet personnel in the South Island.
68. Apart from a leave and refit period in July-August, STAWELL was employed in the sea training of Compulsory Naval Reservists and Continuous Service Trainees from HMNZS TAMAKI until early November 1957.
69. In early June this vessel was dispatched from Auckland to the assistance of S.S. CAPTAIN HOBSON, which had broken down 450 miles east of East Cape. However, the M.V. PORT MACQUARIE had made an earlier rendezvous with CAPTAIN HOBSON and STAWELL acted as escort during the successful tow of the vessel to Auckland.
70. The further employment of STAWELL in October included assistance in the righting of the Auckland Harbour Board’s dredge HAPAI, sunk in the approaches to Auckland.
71. In November and December STAWELL took part in basic antisubmarine training in the Hauraki Gulf and a large-scale combined maritime exercise in the Tasman Sea with other units of the RNZN, RN, RAN, RNZAF, and RAAF. A visit to Sydney was made before returning to Auckland for Christmas leave.
72. Continuing in her training role, the ship visited Wellington and also attended the Treaty of Waitangi celebrations before commencing an annual refit at Auckland in early March 1958.
(x) FISHERY PROTECTION
73. The two seaward defence motor launches MAKO and PAEA have continued in their duties of fishery protection, working in close liaison with the Fisheries Branch of the Marine Department.
74. Although normally employed in the Auckland Command area, these vessels carried out an extended cruise of the North and South Islands during October and November, visiting many of New Zealand’s smaller ports en route.
75. The Marine Department have confirmed that these vessels are performing a most useful function in the prevention of poaching and illegal fishing activity.
(xi) RNZFA TUI
76. The naval research vessel TUI was engaged in work for the Naval Research Laboratory, until mid-May 1957.
77. After a month under refit, the vessel proceeded to Wellington and to Hawkes Bay carrying out oceanographic research for the Oceanographic Institute of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research.
78. TUI returned to Auckland in late July and, until February 1958, was employed on trials and research for the Naval Research Laboratory in Hauraki Gulf, with a period under refit in Auckland in November and December 1957.
79. During March 1958, TUI was again employed on oceanographic research in the Fiji, Samoa, and Tonga areas on behalf of the Oceanographic Institute.
(xii) AUXILIARY CRAFT
80. The Royal New Zealand Fleet Auxiliary vessel ISA LEI has been mainly employed on the dumping at sea of unserviceable ammunition for the three Armed Services and in the transport of ammunition and other stores between the four main New Zealand ports. The vessel has also assisted in Naval Research Laboratory projects and in bottom sampling in Cook Strait.
81. Other auxiliary craft of the Auckland Command are employed on regular lighthouse servicing duties in that area and the occasional transport of mail and stores to Great Barrier Island.
82. As units of the Royal New Zealand Navy, every opportunity has been taken to carry out exercises at sea in New Zealand waters. New Zealand has maintained her contribution towards ANZAM. Ships of the Royal New Zealand Navy have also combined with units of other Commonwealth and Allied Navies in major SEATO exercises in the Far East area.
SECTION Ill-NAVAL VISITS TO NEW ZEALAND
(i) VISIT OF COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF, FAR EAST STATION
83. A visit of considerable interest and benefit to the RNZN was that of the Commander-in-Chief, Far East Station, Admiral Sir Gerald Gladstone, K.C.B., C.B., in March of this year. Admiral Gladstone and Lady Gladstone were guests of the Government whilst in Auckland and Wellington and during this period Admiral Gladstone had discussions with the Government, the Naval Board, and dockyard representatives.
84. Also accompanying him were three staff officers who took the opportunity of having discussions with RNZN officers on matters of common interest. The visit resulted in the exchange of much up-to-date information and the mutual benefit of a closer liaison between the two services.
(ii) COMMONWEALTH NAVIES
85. This year has witnessed the visit of several United Kingdom ships, which have contributed towards the training of RNZNVR personnel and Sea Cadets. The inclusion of Lyttelton and Dunedin in the itineraries of these ships has enabled Sea Cadets in those areas to be embarked for valuable sea training.
86. HMS CONCORD, a “C” class destroyer attached to the Far East Fleet, visited Auckland, Wellington, Lyttelton, and Dunedin and participated in training exercises. Other RN ships making training cruises were the following Bay class frigates attached to the Far East Fleet: HMS ST. BRIDE’S BAY (Auckland and Lyttelton).
HMS CARDIGAN BAY (Auckland, Wellington, and Lyttelton).
HM Submarine AUROCHS, an “A” class submarine of the Fourth Submarine Squadron based in Sydney, visited Auckland and Wellington in November-December 1957; AUROCHS was engaged in sonar exercises and later joined RAN and RNZN ships in Tasman Sea exercises.
87. The RN survey ship HMS COOK assisted the RNZN by carrying out survey work on the New Zealand Station during the course of her South Pacific survey programme. She was refitted at the dockyard during December 1957 – January 1958.
88. HMCS ONTARIO, a cruiser of the Royal Canadian Navy, paid a goodwill visit to New Zealand, calling at Auckland in March of this year.
(iii) UNITS OF OTHER NAVIES
89. Ships of the United States and French Navies visited New Zealand, calling at both North and South Island ports. Four USN destroyer divisions, each comprising four destroyers, visited Auckland during the period August 1957 – March 1958. In February the USN cruisers BREMERTON and ST. PAUL visited Auckland and Wellington respectively. Two USN submarines, BASHAW and BREAM, visited Wellington and Auckland respectively, in August and November 1957.
90. In addition, visits to Wellington were made by two destroyer divisions, each comprising four destroyers and the USS HASSA YAMPA, a fleet oiler.
91. Two destroyer escorts, USS VAMMEN and LERAY WILSON, visited Lyttelton in February 1958 in the course of training cruises in the Western Pacific.
92. The French sloop FRANCIS GARNIER, which last visited Auckland in 1955, called at Auckland, Wellington, and Dunedin in March this year wearing the flag of Rear Admiral de Toulouse Lautrec, Commander-in-Chief of French Naval Forces in the Pacific. Admiral de Toulouse Lautrec was a guest of the Government for the period of his visit and travelled overland to join the ship at Wellington and Dunedin.
(iv) OPERATION DEEPFREEZE
93. During the summer period 1957-58, 10 USN ships (icebreakers and store ships connected with Operation Deepfreeze Ill) visited Lyttelton and Dunedin on a number of occasions for the purposes of recreation and replenishment of stores.
94. More young New Zealand officers have completed their initial training overseas and have now returned to take up appointments in RNZN ships and establishments. This represents an important stage in the maturity of the Royal New Zealand Navy, the requirements for officers on loan from the Royal Navy being thus reduced.
95. It is necessary, however, for this initial training to be consolidated by experience and this can be achieved only by the exchange of officers between the Royal Navy and the Royal New Zealand Navy.
96. During the 12 months under review eight cadets have been entered. Results from cadets at present undergoing training continue to be most satisfactory and reflect credit not only on the individuals but also on the standards set at the selection level.
97. In addition normal promotions from the lower deck have been achieved, two being promoted under the Upperyardman Scheme and two to the Special Duties List of Officers.
98. There is a shortage of Royal New Zealand Navy personnel coming forward for promotion to the Special Duties List of Officers from the lower deck. This is not so much attributed to the lack of personnel qualified to do so, as to the lack of incentives for promotion, a matter which is being considered.
99. An event of particular significance during the year was the appointment for the first time of an RNZN officer to the New Zealand Naval Board (Commodore Peter Phipps, D.S.C. AND BAR, V.R.D., as Second Naval Member).
100. At 31 March 1958, the total male rating strength of the Royal New Zealand Navy was 2,583, the highest figure since 1946. This increase has resulted from two causes: by senior ratings re-engaging to complete time for superannuation and by the fall in the number of engagements expiring in 1956 and 1957 due to the change from a six-year to an eight-year engagement in 1950.
101. Of 143 ratings due for discharge, nine were retired on superannuation and 53 re-engaged. A total of 238 ratings re-engaged for further service during the year, the introduction of a re-engagement bonus towards the end of 1956 being a contributory factor. In 1958, with an increased number of engagements expiring, a slight fall in total strength may be expected.
102. Modern ships require a greater number of technicians and personnel with technical training, and there is a shortage in these categories. The inadequate number of artificer ratings, particularly in the Engineroom, Ordnance, and Electrical Branches, is one of the factors governing the size and shape of the fleet.
103. The complement of the Women’s Royal New Zealand Naval Service as at 31 March 1958 was seven officers (including three under training) and 95 ratings. This is below requirements and some branches are seriously undermanned. This situation cannot be remedied until further permanent accommodation is made available, the present quarters being inadequate to house the complement required.
104. The number and general standard of applicants presenting themselves for entry remain about the same as in previous years, but there is a slight increase in the percentage of rejections caused mainly by failure to reach the required educational standard.
105. The percentage of ratings re-engaging for further terms has dropped slightly, but many of those who were released had already completed several years’ service.
106. The annual training programme for WRNZNS personnel has been expanded to include instructional courses for potential officers who are thus equipped with a comprehensive knowledge of their duties before taking up their appointments.
107. A keen interest continues to be taken in women’s sports and various teams have acquitted themselves very satisfactorily in both inter-Service and. civilian competitions.
108. The disciplinary standard remains high and the general morale of the Service is very good.
109. The experiment announced in 1956, whereby six intakes of recruits would be entered each year, has been abolished. Although the system accomplished the intended reduction of time between a candidate’s acceptance for naval service and his actual entry, the administrative problems involved did not justify retention of the scheme. The system of three intakes of trainees each year has been again adopted.
110. The value of permanent recruiting offices in the four main centres has again been proved. The majority of potential recruits have already been interviewed and advised by one of the four local recruiters prior to the visit of the Recruiting Board. This system ensures the most economical use of the time spent in interviewing and testing recruits when the Recruiting Board visits the various centres.
111. These permanent recruiters also support the work of the Recruiting Board by paying regular visits to outlying areas of their respective centres and visiting schools. Such visits have helped to foster good relations with the general public and offer a good avenue for free press publicity.
112. Overall recruiting figures for the last 12 months have shown a decline on previous years. Two hundred and twenty-nine new recruits were entered, representing only 57 per cent of the Navy’s requirements as compared with 65 per cent the previous year. This decline has been more noticeable over the last six months. There appears, however, to be an increasing interest in the artificer and cadet entry schemes.
(v) HONOURS AND AWARDS
113. The following honours and awards to Royal Navy, Royal New Zealand Navy, and Royal New Zealand Naval Volunteer Reserve personnel were made during the year:
Ordinary Commander of the Military Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire:
Commodore George Raymond Davis-Goff, D.S.C. AND BAR.
Ordinary Officer of the Military Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire:
Captain Leonard Stanley Stanners, RNZN.
Commander Richard Thomas Hale, RNZN.
Commander Robert Lindsay Laurenson, V.R.’b., RNZNVR
Acting Commander Edward Perry Reade, D.S.C., RN.
Ordinary Member of the Military Division of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire:
Lieutenant-Commander John Fergus Young Schischka, V.R.D.,RNZNVR.
Second Officer Mary Vernon Morten, WRNZNS.
British Empire Medal (Military Division) :
Engineroom Artificer First Class Basil Bertram French.
Chief Electrician John Charles Harris.
Chief Ordnance Artificer Trevor Graham Lloydd.
Sick Berth Chief Petty Officer Joseph Steel Mitchell.
Engineroom Artificer First Class Ernest Alexander Newman.
Sick Berth Chief Petty Officer Walter Roy Robb.
Stores Chief Petty Officer Warwick Garth Benjamin Suckling.
Master-at-Arms John Vincent Thomson.
Chief Wren Barbara Radford Bilton.
114. The requirements for technical training continue to increase, and it is becoming even more difficult to meet the position satisfactorily.
115. Approximately half the teaching effort is spent on preparing personnel for service examinations for advancement and promotion and this year 140 passed educationally for advancement.
116. It has not been possible to overcome the difficulty of providing financial assistance to ships for their libraries. Shore establishments make use of library facilities made available by Army to the services, but these are not available for ships at sea. Ships and establishments are dependent on grants from canteen profits for their new books.
117. There was a steady demand for study courses, 50 being supplied through the Correspondence School and the Technical Correspondence School. The demand for these courses indicates the interest taken in preparing for civilian employment.
118. During the year there was a large rise in sickness due to the epidemic of influenza which swept the country in the late winter and early spring. Approximately 4,000 days were lost through the epidemic, 947 cases being reported. However, there was a substantial fall in the incidence of other sickness.
119. Four deaths occurred, two being caused by cancer, one by acute inflammation of the brain, and the fourth was caused by a parachute failing to open when a rating, not on duty, was practising jumping.
120. Four hundred and ninety-two male recruits were examined, of whom 411 were passed as fit, an almost identical percentage with that of last year. Forty-three were cadet candidates and of these 36 satisfied the medical examiners. General poor physique accompanying congenital or acquired disabilities, defective vision or colour vision accounted for most of the rejections.
121. Fifty-six WRNZNS were presented for medical examination and 49 were passed as fit.
122. Fifty male New Zealand ratings were invalided from the Service during the year. This represents a fall of some 17 per cent on last year’s figures. Approximately half the cases were due to psychiatric causes.
123. Two ratings of the WRNZNS were discharged medically, both for psychiatric reasons.
124. Nine Compulsory Naval Reservists were also found medically unfit to complete their liability.
125. There has been a slight but welcome improvement in the number of medical officers borne during the year. This has been due entirely to the entry of United Kingdom candidates. No New Zealander has applied and none has been entered.
126. The shortage of medical ratings is causing considerable concern, only two Regular Service trainees being under tuition throughout the year. This is quite inadequate to meet requirements and it may be necessary to consider an increase in female staff in the Royal New Zealand Naval Hospital in order to release male ratings for sea-going ships.
127. Only by the loyalty of a staff prepared at all times to work beyond normal hours have the full medical demands of the hospital once again been met.
128. Training of Volunteer Reserve and CNR sick berth ratings has continued and reasonable results have been achieved considering the short periods for which they are available.
129. CNR medical and dental students have continued to report for training and with their professional knowledge as a background have contributed considerably to hospital manning.
130. Reserve medical and dental officers have also provided valuable assistance, which has enabled Regular Service officers to be given outstanding leave.
131. A dental officer strength of three has been totally inadequate to cope with the demands of the Service and consequently dental health has not been maintained to a desirable standard.
132. Better conditions of service for dental officers have recently been introduced and it is hoped that dental manning will improve.
(viii) RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES
133. The construction of a much-appreciated amenity, a Fleet swimming pool at HMNZS PHILOMEL, was completed and the pool was opened for the use of naval personnel in March. The cost has been met from non-public moneys made available from the Amenities Improvement. Fund.
134. During the year, the first trampoline to be used by the Services in New Zealand was installed in the gymnasium in PHILOMEL. This device provides a form of gymnastic training combining the skills of tumbling and diving and is an apparatus on which gymnasts, field athletes, parachute jumpers, and others develop a skill in taking off and landing.
135. Sport has continued to play its important part in developing the competitive spirit and improving the physical fitness of both trainees and other personnel. This is evidenced by the keenness of ships’ companies to compete with other ships and teams in their homeport or any ports visited. Teams from ROYALIST have had marked success with ships of the Far East Fleet. Her rugby team won the Fleet Rugby Championship, took six of the 10 titles in boxing championships, and three out of six championships at the Fleet Sport Festival. In swimming and shooting, ROYALIST also had outstanding success.
136. In New Zealand, the Navy rugby team was the winner of the Auckland Senior B Championship for the 1957 season and thereby gained promotion to the Senior A Grade for the coming season. Navy teams were also entered in local competitions in women’s hockey and in men and women’s indoor basketball. Leading Radio Electrical Mechanic J. R. Hughes won the Dominion Light Middleweight Boxing Title for the third year in succession.
137. During the year the construction of the 88 flats in the Ngataringa Road Scheme was completed. Only a small amount of ground development work remains to be done.
138. Of the 407 units approved in the Navy; housing programme, only 56 remain to be erected. All these will be on the North Shore, Auckland.
139. During the year the Housing Division of the Ministry of Works prepared detailed plans and estimates for 22 of the remaining units. Approval for the necessary expenditure was obtained and tenders have been called.
140. Towards the end of the year the Housing Division was requested to provide detailed plans and estimates for the 34 houses that will complete the current housing programme.
141. The RNZN mounted a Royal Guard and band for the opening of Parliament on 22 January and again paraded for the reception of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother at Parliament House on 7 February 1958.
142. The RNZN was represented at the 1958 Waitangi celebrations on 6 February 1958 by HMNZ ships PUKAKI and STAWELL and motor launches PAEA and MAKO, whose personnel provided an armed guard and buglers for the ceremony.
143. HMNZS STAWELL mounted a guard and firing party at Tauranga on 19 October 1957 for the commemoration of the Gate Pa Battle and participated in the local Trafalgar Day celebrations.
144. The main event during the year was the cessation of CNR intakes, which resulted in the introduction of major changes in the system of training. The restricted nature of CNR engagements entailed separate courses from those required for the basic training of full-time Service trainees. The removal of this restriction has hastened the policy of standardisation referred to in last year’s report and has allowed the introduction of a standard syllabus for all new entry classes and also of a standard term, week, and day, thus providing improved continuity (If instruction. Consequently, class instructors teaching all subjects in the syllabus have been replaced with divisional instructors specialising in one subject. This has improved the general standard of instruction. The syllabuses are currently being revised and modernised.
145. One week at sea is now included in the syllabus for second-term boys and men and has been found a most beneficial and necessary part of their basic seamanship training. This provides general familiarisation and practical application of lessons taught.
146. In the final term of the basic training, advantage has been taken of visiting RN ships to give opportunities to trainees to spend one or two days at sea to enable them to inspect the latest types of gunnery, anti-submarine, and radar equipments which are not available in RNZN frigates. This has greatly assisted their choice of specialisation.
147. Sport continues to play a prominent part in developing the embryo sailor and every encouragement is given trainees to take an active part in competitive sport.
148. The last of the CNRs to be trained at TAMAKI numbered 65. Their departure at the end of the winter term left a temporary but noticeable void in the, general spirit and removed an excellent source of competition and stimulus for all other recruits.
149. A large proportion of basic, specialist, and technical training previously carried out in Australia is now undertaken for the time being in New Zealand. This, allied with the new policy introduced last year of training all seamen in specialist qualifications before proceeding to sea, has resulted in men’s specialist careers being lengthened by earlier qualification. The backlog of unqualified ratings serving at sea is being reduced considerably.
150. Although this increased training activity in New Zealand has resulted in classes being increased in size, which is acceptable as it makes for economy in instructors. Lack of space and equipment are major difficulties, which have been overcome to some extent by the use of recreational space and the utilisation of Reserve Fleet space and equipment in HMNZS BLACK PRINCE. There is still a requirement for extra space to allow setting up of training equipment in specialist schools.
151. The value of the new policy is exemplified by the increased number of ratings with specialist qualifications being made available to the Fleet – from 72 in 1956 to 176 in 1957.
152. A total of 869 officers and ratings underwent periods of instruction of one week or more during the year. In addition 331 ratings were given a half-day’s training in damage control and fire fighting.
(i) WITHIN NEW ZEALAND
153. It is still necessary to rely on Australian naval facilities for some of the more advanced specialist training. However, advantage has been taken wherever possible to instruct trainees on the modern equipment available in visiting warships. It is proposed to carry out further advanced training when HMNZS ROYALIST with her modern equipment returns to New Zealand.
154. For the more advanced training of its higher specialists the RNZN must continue to rely on the Royal Australian Navy which has the extensive facilities available for training in the use of the up-to date equipment installed in modern warships. The advances made in modern electronic equipment require expensive technical training equipment and it would not be economic for the smaller RNZN to duplicate the facilities available in Australia. The RNZN has an obligation to the Royal Australian Navy to provide only a token instructor force and no maintenance help.
155. It is gratifying that the candidates for higher specialist qualification compare most favourably with their Australian counterparts. The competitive spirit resulting from the intermingling of the two navies produces a higher and more easily assessable standard whilst resulting in an overall saving of instructors.
156. Specialist training for officers is obtainable only in the United Kingdom. .
(iii) ARTIFICER APPRENTICES TRAINING
157. During the past year a total of 71 artificer apprentices were under training in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Of these, 46 are at present in the United Kingdom undergoing Part II training and 25 are undergoing Part I training in PHILOMEL.
(iv) MERCHANT NAVY DEFENCE COURSES
158. Two Merchant Navy defence courses were conducted in Wellington during the year.
159. These courses, of a week’s duration, are designed to instruct Merchant Navy officers in the part they must play to ensure the desired degree of safety for their ships in time of war.
SECTION VI-NON-REGULAR FORCES (i) RESERVES
160. The strength of the Reserves at 31 March 1958 totalled 634 officers and 3,801 ratings. Of this number, 15 officers are members of the Royal New Zealand Naval Reserve and actively follow the sea as their profession. Two of these officers are in command of Union Steam Ship Company vessels.
161. The remainder of the active Reservists are attached to the four RNZNVR Divisions and total 123 officers and 981 ratings; the majority of the latter are men who entered the RNZN for training in accordance with the provisions of the Military Training Act 1949 and its amendments.
162. The inactive Reservists who comprise the remainder consist of retired officers of both the Regular and Reserve Forces, together with time-expired Regular Service ratings who on discharge have a reserve liability and men who have completed active training as 18-year-olds and have been posted to the inactive Reserve for the remainder of their period of service.
163. On 30 April 1958, the RNZN will discontinue the training of men entered under the provisions of the Act and from 1 May all RNZNVR Divisions will recruit only volunteers. In the eight years the Military Training Act has been in operation, a total of 1,992 men have been entered and in general the calibre of rating electing to serve in the Navy has been outstanding. During the entire eight years a consistent percentage of men have elected to continue active training as volunteer ratings on completion of their National Service time and at the present moment indications show that a considerable number of men who are due to be posted to the inactive Reserve on 30 April next will apply for transfer to the reorganised RNZNVR. A further pleasing aspect of compulsory military training has been the number of 18-year-olds who have been promoted to officer rank in the RNZNVR. The majority of these officers continue to serve and comprise a valuable reserve potential.
(ii) SEA CADET CORPS
164. The Sea Cadet Corps, being a voluntary youth organisation with the object of providing boys with sea training and such other training as will develop in them those qualities which make for good citizenship, continues to attract large numbers of boys both in the closed (school) units and open (Navy League) units.
165. The Sea Cadets who were privileged to attend the Empire Sea Cadet Camp held in the United Kingdom in June 1957 acquitted themselves with credit both during their actual training and also in the competitive field of sport.
166. In January 1958, eight officers and 209 cadets from the four main centres attended the annual summer camp for Sea Cadets in HMNZS TAMAKI. In addition, two Royal Navy ships, HMS CONCORD and HMS CARDIGAN BAY, provided sea training for nine officers and 120 Sea Cadets.
167. The Sea Cadet Corps provides recruits for the RNZN and it is gratifying to note that large numbers of Sea Cadets are offering themselves as volunteers for the newly reorganised RNZNVR.
168. During the past 10 years, three Empire Camps for Sea Cadets have been held, one in Canada and two in the United Kingdom. The New Zealand Sea Cadet Corps has been well represented at each of these camps and the New Zealand Navy League are now arranging for an Empire Camp to be held in New Zealand in January 1960. On this occasion the New Zealand body will be hosts to the overseas visitors. It is hoped that some 80 cadets from all parts of the Commonwealth will attend and approval has been given for these lads, together with their New Zealand counterparts, to attend a camp of approximately three weeks’ duration in HMNZS TAMAKI. All costs for victualling and accommodation for the time spent in camp will be borne by the RNZN. This is in line with the facilities provided by the Royal Navy and Royal Canadian Navy at previous gatherings of this nature. Following the camp in HMNZS TAMAKI, the Commonwealth Sea Cadets will be the responsibility of the New Zealand Navy League for the remainder of their time in New Zealand.
169. On 31 March 1958 the strength of the New Zealand Sea Cadet Corps was 1,044, made up as follows:’
Closed (School) Units: officers, 17; cadets, 505.
Open (Navy League) Units: officers, 29; cadets, 493.
(i) SHORE COMMUNICATIONS
170. HMNZS IRIRANGI, the naval wireless station at Waiouru, provides complete wireless facilities for the control of naval operations as well as the strategic communications link with other Commonwealth and Allied countries. In addition, a considerable amount of commercial traffic is handled in conjunction with the Post and Telegraph Department.
171. This year has been outstanding for the amount of additional activity in New Zealand’s area, such as the large number of American ships engaged in Operation Deepfreeze, the activities connected with New Zealand’s contribution to the Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition, and the International Geophysical Year. Visits by American cruisers and destroyer squadrons and United Kingdom, French, and Canadian naval units have added to the amount of communication activity in this area.
172. In addition to its functions as a naval communication station, IRIRANGI is a valuable national asset. In the event of a national emergency or breakdown of the Government stations at Himitangi or Makara, it would be the only other station in the country capable of maintaining most of the overseas telecommunication services. For this reason it is essential that this station be brought up to a high peak of efficiency and to this end a programme of modernisation is being undertaken.
173. Opportunity was taken during the visit of the French ship FRANCIS GARNIER to organise and test a circuit between IRIRANGI and the French Headquarters at Noumea. This circuit would be valuable in an emergency and could be operated without any extra equipment.
(ii) SHIP-BORNE COMMUNICATIONS
174. Re-equipment programmes to maintain compatibility of communications between RNZN ships and other Commonwealth and Allied Navies are planned. Radio automatic teletype equipment has already been fitted in ROYALIST and ROTOITI to meet operational requirements on the Far East Station. This stems from the trend in Allied Navies towards automatic operation, which provides more accurate, faster, and more secure communication than manual operation.
(iii) EXERCISE COMMUNICATIONS
175. Two major exercises took place during the year. Exercise Navcontex from 8 to 13 September was an exercise of the naval control of merchant shipping organisation, those nations taking part being Australia, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and the South Pacific area dependencies. The second exercise, Astrolabe, from 8 to 12 December, was held in the Tasman Sea involving the Australian and New Zealand navies and air forces.
176. Routine exercises have been conducted to train active and reserve ratings. The efficiency of the reserve communications ratings is high and it is hoped that with the reorganisation of the RNZNVR, an even higher standard will be attained.
SECTION VIII-HMNZ DOCKYARD (i) GENERAL
177. A full programme of work demanded a high output level from all dockyard resources during the year.
178. The docking allocations for both commercial and naval ships in Calliope Dock have again been arranged by the Central Docking Committee. A good and cooperative relationship exists with the Auckland Harbour Board and shipping companies and consequently no difficulties have arisen.
179. The Royal Navy ships HMS SALVICTOR and HMS COOK were refitted during the year. The refit of HMS SALVICTOR referred to in last year’s report was completed at the beginning of the year. The survey ship HMS COOK was given an extensive refit during the summer period.
(a) Major Vessels
180. ROYALIST was docked and given a short refit for essential work before leaving for the Far East Station.
181. The essential work in BLACK PRINCE referred to in last year’s report was completed during the year. In addition, some work was done to improve the habitability of the accommodation.
182. KANIERE, on return from the Far East Station, was refitted and docked.
183. PUKAKI was given short periods of overhaul when available between operational commitments at Christmas Island.
184. ROTOITI was given an extensive refit and docking prior to departure for the Far East Station.
(b) Minor Vessels
185. Of the minesweepers, STAWELL was docked and refitted during the year. The modernisation of INVERELL was commenced. ECHUCA and KIAMA were docked for routine maintenance.
186. ENDEAVOUR was refitted and docked on return from the Antarctic. The repairs included part renewal of the stem, which had suffered ice damage.
187. Routine maintenance was carried out on the fishery protection motor launches MAKO and PAEA.
188. The research vessel TUI was refitted and docked during the year and miscellaneous work carried out to suit the research work in hand.
(c) Auxiliary Craft
189. Routine maintenance was carried out on the motor launches employed in transport to HMNZS TAMAKI. A start has been made on re-engining these launches with British Foden engines to replace the worn-out American Hercules engines for which spares are now unobtainable.
190. The 50-year-old HAURAKI was given a thorough overhaul, which should extend this ship’s life for a number of years.
191. The number of ships in the Reserve Fleet remains at
192. HMNZS BLACK PRINCE is the headquarters and living ship of the Reserve Fleet. During the year the ship was given a limited refit. Her gunnery and fire-control systems, which have been cocooned for preservation, are obsolete and could not cope with modern high-speed aircraft.
(iii) RESERVE FLEET
193. HMNZS HAWEA, which was placed in reserve last year, is steadily approaching a state of preservation and all essential defects have been made good.
HMNZS T AUPO is still cocooned and dehumidified.
HMNZS TUTIRA is in a partially preserved condition.
(d) Bathurst Class Minesweepers
194. HMNZS KIAMA was refitted and cocooned and is now almost ready for dehumidification.
195. HMNZS ECHUCA is due for refit and modernisation. The ship raised steam in October 1957 and assisted in salvage work on the Auckland Harbour Board dredge HAPAI.
196. HMNZS INVERELL is in dockyard hands for refit and modernisation.
(e) Anti-submarine Minesweeping Trawlers
197. HMNZS KIWI has been externally maintained only.
198. HMNZ ships SANDA, SCARBA, INCHKEITH, and KILLEGRA Y are of no further use in the RNZN and have been declared surplus to the Government Stores Board for disposal.
(iv) MISCELLANEOUS WORK
199. Certain work of a minor nature was undertaken for other Government Departments and some work was done for private firms where facilities for such work were not available elsewhere than in the dockyard.
(v) NAVAL STORE ORGANISATION
200. In order to provide stowage space for new items of stores, which will be necessary for the Whitby class frigates, a review of stocks commenced during the year. This will enable further quantities of redundant and obsolete items to be disposed of through the Government Stores Board.
201. Following a review of messtrap stores, some 90 items were considered redundant to present requirements and deleted. Others, previously subject to import, were replaced by substitutes available from New Zealand manufacturers.
202. Old stocks of boom defence stores recovered after World War II were brought to produce during the year. Serviceable items, after preservation, were transferred to the boom defence storage depot at Islington Bay and unserviceable items disposed of as scrap.
203. Stocks of materials, surplus to requirements, were declared to Government Stores Board and offered to other Government Departments.
(vi) NAVAL ARMAMENT DEPOTS
204. Normal routine work continued during the year to maintain all holdings of naval armament stores in fully serviceable condition ready for immediate issue to the Service.
205. Wharf facilities were made available to Army and Air Force for inwards and outwards shipping of their explosive stores.
(vii) DOCKYARD DEVELOPMENT
206. Progress on the new weapon equipment shop, referred to in last year’s report as the gunnery equipment shop, continued and it is hoped that this shop will be completed in time for the next refit of ROYALIST on return from the Far East.
207. Other alterations to workshop facilities included the transfer of the sheet metal workers to a part of the boiler shop and the improvement of washing and changing facilities in some of the shops.
SECTION IX-DEPARTMENTAL ADMINISTRATION
(i) PUBLIC SERVICE STAFF
208. With the general improvement in the availability of suitable staff to provide the civilian clerical and technical services to the Navy, it has been possible to be more selective in making appointments. A gratifying number of cadets have begun their careers with the Department and under the internal training programme they are being given every opportunity to gain experience in the various phases of departmental activity.
209. A planned programme of staff training is being carried out for both technical and non-technical staff to give them a full appreciation of their role in the departmental organisation and to instruct supervisors in the art of supervision and control of staff.
210. An Organisation and Methods team investigated the stores accounting system in Navy Department and a comprehensive report was produced containing recommendations on improved stores procedures. A full-time O and M Officer has now been appointed to the Department and among his first duties will be the implementation of this Organisation and Methods report on stores accounting.
(ii) DOCKYARD WORKMEN
211. No claims were lodged during the year by the workmen employed under Government Services Tribunal Order No. 141. Relations with staff and workmen’s representatives again remained on a very satisfactory basis. No time was lost during the year through industrial disputes.
212. Applications were invited during the year from tradesmen employed on the casual staff for appointment to the permanent staff and a total of 23 was finally appointed. The number appointed from the inception of the scheme some four years ago totals 119.
(iii) DOCKYARD APPRENTICES
213. Twenty-nine apprentices were entered during the year, compared with 33 for the previous year. Twenty-four apprentices completed their time during the year and 14 remained in the yard as tradesmen. Of a total of 33 vacancies, 29 were filled, two of the unfilled positions being for boilermaker apprentices. The number of boys seeking apprenticeships, as in the previous year, exceeded the number of vacancies and it was possible to select a group who should develop into first-class tradesmen. Advantage was also taken of the services of the Naval Personnel Selection Officer to assist in assessing the aptitudes of prospective apprentices.
214. Results of outside examinations continue to be satisfactory. Some 25 apprentices completed New Zealand Trades Certification Board examinations during the year. Owing to pressure of other work, it was not possible to continue the lectures for apprentices at the Dockyard School.
(iv) NAVAL RELATIONS OFFICERS
215. The 25 Naval Relations Officers continue to serve the Royal New Zealand Navy throughout New Zealand in a voluntary capacity.
216. All Naval Relations Officers have seen service with the RNZN and their experience is most valuable in recruiting, welfare work, arrangements for ships’ visits, and the dissemination of naval information.
217. The Naval Board is most grateful for their continued efforts on behalf of the RNZN.
218. The amount voted for the services of the Navy for the 1957-58 financial year was £6,000,000. This was made up of £5,500,000 for routine expenditure and £500,000 for housing, buildings, and the maintenance of shore establishments. The amount voted did not provide for construction costs of the Whitby frigates as the expenditure incurred was to be charged to the Defence Fund.
219. The expenditure from vote “Navy” amounted to £5,447,634, showing an under-expenditure of £52,366.
220. An amount of £400,000 was paid from the Defence Fund on account of the Whitby frigates, bringing the total payments to date to £625,000.
221. The financial contribution made by the Navy towards the New Zealand Trans-Antarctic Expedition amounted to £18,405. This sum, together with an expenditure of £92,317 in the previous financial year, made a total contribution by the Navy of £110,722 towards the expedition.
222. Of the £500,000 provided in vote “Defence Construction and Maintenance”, £160,000 was allocated for housing, of which £114,330 was expended. A further 51 flats were completed in the Ngataringa Road block and, with the exception of ground development this project is now completed. In addition four houses were also completed.
223. Although good progress was made with the works programme the expenditure amounted to only £211,466 against £250,000 voted.
CONSTITUTION AND MEMBERS OF THE NAVAL BOARD
(a) Constitution–The New Zealand Naval Board is constituted under the Navy Act 1954.
(b) Members as at 31 March 1958:
Hon. P. G. Connolly, D.S.C., V.R.D., M.P., Minister of Defence (Chairman).
Rear Admiral J. M. Villiers, O.B.E. (First Naval Member).
Commodore Peter Phipps, D.S.C. AND BAR, V.R.D. (Second Naval Member).
Captain G. H. Stanning, D.S.O., RN. (Third Naval Member).
D. A. Wraight, Esq. (Navy Secretary and Member).