New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy
|New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy|
|Type||Naval squadron & fleet|
The New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy was formed in 1921 and remained in existence until 1941. It was the precursor to the Royal New Zealand Navy. Originally, the British Royal Navy was solely responsible for the naval security of New Zealand. The passing of the Naval Defence Act 1913 created the New Zealand Naval Forces as a separate division within the Royal Navy.
On 1 January 1921, the New Zealand Naval Forces, which had formerly been under the command of the China Station, were renamed the New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy. Funded by Wellington and increasingly manned by New Zealanders, it operated 14 ships over a period of 21 years, including the cruisers HMS Achilles and HMS Leander, the training minesweeper HMS Wakakura, and the cruiser HMS Philomel which was recommissioned as a base training establishment.
The Commodore's appointment was abolished and forces brought directly under the NZ CNS from October 1940. The New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy became the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) from 1 October 1941, in recognition of the fact that the naval force was now largely self-sufficient and independent of the Royal Navy.
Ships of the New Zealand Division
Sortable list covering the period from the inception of the New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy in 1921 to the formation of the Royal New Zealand Navy on 1 October 1941.
|HMS Achilles||70||Cruiser||Leander class||1936||1941||1941–1946 was HMNZS Achilles in the RNZN|
|HMS Auckland||L61||Convoy sloop||Grimsby class||1938||1939||Nominated only.|
|HMS Chatham||Cruiser||Town class||1920||1924||Replaced by Dunedin in 1924|
|HMS Diomede||D92||Cruiser||Danae class||1926||1935||Replaced by Achilles in 1936|
|HMS Dunedin||D93||Cruiser||Danae class||1924||1937||Replaced by Leander in 1937|
|HMS Laburnum||T48||Convoy sloop||Acacia class||1922||1935||Flower class sloop|
|HMS Leander||Cruiser||Leander class||1937||1941||1941–1944 was HMNZS Leander in the RNZN|
|HMS Leith||L36||Convoy sloop||Grimsby class||1934||1939|
|RFA Nucula||L61||Fleet oiler||1924||1937||oil hulk 1937–1947|
|HMS Philomel||Cruiser||Pearl class||1921||1941||"Cradle of the Navy." 1914–1921 was HMS Philomel in the NZ Naval Forces. 1941–1947 became HMNZS Philomel in the RNZN|
|HMS Puriri (T02)||T02||Minesweeper||Converted merchant ship||1941||1941||14 May 1941 struck a German mine 9 miles NE of the Whangarei heads and sank with the loss of five crew members.|
|HMS Torch||Convoy sloop||1921||1924||1914–1921 was HMS Torch in the NZ Naval Forces. Also called a gunboat. Wrecked in Chatham Islands. Picture|
|HMS Veronica||T67||Convoy sloop||Acacia class||1920||1934||Flower class sloop|
|HMS Wellington||L65||Convoy sloop||Grimsby class||1935||1939|
|HMS Wakakura||T00||Minesweeper||Castle class||1926||1941||1941–1945 was HMNZS Wakakura in the RNZN|
When Britain went to war against Germany in 1939, New Zealand promptly declared war and expanded its naval forces. In recognition that the naval force was now largely self-sufficient and independent of the Royal Navy, the New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy became the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) in 1941.
According to the Royal Navy web site, in 1941 there were
- 2 Cruisers
- 2 Escort Vessels
- 1 Survey Vessel
- 1 Minesweeping Vessel
as well as miscellaneous ships.
The prefix "royal" was granted by King George VI on 1 October 1941, and ships thereafter were prefixed with HMNZS (His/Her Majesty's New Zealand Ship).
Commodores Commanding and Rear-Admirals, New Zealand Division
Officers who commanded the New Zealand Division include:
|Commodore Commanding, New Zealand Station|
|Commodore||Alan Hotham||March 1921|
|Commodore||Alister Beal||August 1923|
|Commodore||George Swabey||18 June 1926|
|Commodore||Geoffrey Blake||19 July 1929|
|Rear Admiral||Fischer Watson||26 February 1932|
|Rear Admiral||Edmund Drummond||March 1935|
|Commodore||Irvine Glennie||June 1938|
|Commodore||James Rivett-Carnac||December 1938|
|Commodore||Henry Horan||December 1939|
|Commodore||Edward Parry||May 1940|
- McGibbon 2000, pp. 45–46.
- New Zealand Electronic Text Centre, Appendix Vi — Members Of New Zealand Naval Board|Appendix VI: Members of the New Zealand Naval Board
- Tonson, A.E. HMS Puriri 1938, NZ Navy, article in Naval Historical Review – March 1983
- HMNZS Puriri
- Senior Royal Navy Appointments
- Hocken Collections, 75 Years of the New Zealand Navy bulletin 17, August 1996
- McDougall, R J (1989) New Zealand Naval Vessels. Page 9-21. Government Printing Office. ISBN 978-0-477-01399-4
- McGibbon, Ian (2000). The Oxford Companion to New Zealand Military History. Auckland: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-558376-0.
- Walters, Sydney David (1956) The Royal New Zealand Navy: Official History of World War II, Department of Internal Affairs, Wellington. Chapter 1b: Genesis of Royal New Zealand Navy
- New Zealand Navy Museum 1921 The New Zealand Division of the Royal Navy
- The Jellicoe Report
- Royal Navy History The Royal New Zealand Navy
- HMS Chatham New Zealand's first cruiser