NAVAL HISTORY



  • Red Lead
  • The Waikato River Gunboats
  • Voyage to Gallipoli
  • False Flags
  • The Story of HMNZS Otago 1960-1970
  • The Story of HMNZS Otago 1970-1976
  • The Story of HMNZS Otago 1977-1983
  • HMNZS Bellona 1946-1957
  • HMNZS Black Prince 1946-1959
  • HMNZS Royalist
  • The Story of HMNZS Blackpool
  • HMNZS Charles Upham
  • A Sailor at Heart
  • Pioneer Sailor
  • Kiwi Bathurst Tales
  • North Sea Warrior
  • A Kiwi Sailor at War
  • The Enemy of the New Zealand Coast
  • Naval Footprints in New Zealand
  • Salty Dits
  • Rainbow Warrior Salvage
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    RED LEAD.
    By Roland Perry, Softcover, 0.47kg 155mm x 235mm, 330 pages, Black & White. Published 2020

    The legendary Australian ship's cat who survived the sinking of HMAS Perth and the Thai-Burma Railway.

    Just after midnight on 1 March 1942, Australia's most renowned cruiser, HMAS Perth, was sunk by Japanese naval forces in the Sunda Strait off the coast of Java. Of the 681 men aboard, 328 survived the sinking and made it to shore-and one cat. Her name was Red Lead, and she was the ship's cat, beloved by the crew and by the Perth's legendary captain Hector Waller.

    But surviving shellfire, torpedoes and the fierce currents of the Sunda Strait was only the beginning of the terrible trials Red Lead and the surviving crew were to face over the next three-and-a-half years.
    From Java to Changi and then on the Thai-Burma Railway, Red Lead was to act as a companion, mascot and occasional protector for a small group of sailors who made it their mission to keep her alive in some of the most hellish prison camps on earth.

    Red Lead's extraordinary story, of courage, loyalty and love amidst battle, imprisonment and death, is brought vividly to life by bestselling author Roland Perry.

    NZ$32.00 + delivery.

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    THE WAIKATO RIVER GUNBOATS,
    By Grant Middlemiss. Paperback, .33kg, 165mm x 250mm, 118 pages. Black & White, and Colour Photos. Line drawings and maps. Published in 2014.

    New Zealand's First Navy. The story of the gunboats used during the British invasion of the Waikato.

    Her Majesty's Waikato River Gunboat Flotilla. New Zealand's First Navy, helped to mould Waikato history. Although they are mentioned in passing by most historians there is little detail of the ships or the pivotal role they played in the Waikato land war.

    The Waikato War of 1863-64 was the most important of the many campaigns fought. With it, the Colonial government aimed to destroy the power of the Maori King whose policy it was to stop Maori selling land to the government. Governor George Grey, who returned in 1861, (as second term Governor), claimed the Waikato tribes had hostile intentions, including plans to invade Auckland. These claims were part of an orchestrated litany of lies aimed at convincing the British Government of the threat that the New Zealand settler colony faced from the local tribes. Today, the Waikato campaign is now seen for what it was - a well-contrived and deliberate land grab. While Grey spoke of peace and reconciliation, he prepared for war. by the time it was clear that Maori were not going to attack Auckland, London had already sent 3000 additional troops to New Zealand. Between 1861 and 1863, at Grey's direction, a force was assembled and developed. The Waikato River was the key, as it provided a road to the interior of the Waikato. Eight purpose built armoured iron river gunboats were deployed as a naval force and transport service to move the 12,000+ troops and supplies into the interior past the Maori fortifications...

    This is the story of that conflict, and the river gunboats that played such an integral part of the campaign.

    NZ$42.00 + delivery.

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    VOYAGE TO GALLIPOLI
    By Peter Plowman, Softcover 180mm x 240mm 0.78kg, 304 Pages. Black & White Photographs. Published 2013
    At the commencement of World War I in 1914, Australia had only been a nation for 13 years and the RAN was only three years old (NZ had been a dominion for 7 years and had no independent navy). As young men rushed to enlist, the governments of both countries had to find ways of transporting them to a war being fought half a world away, and protecting them against German raiders en route. It was a massive undertaking. In Voyage to Gallipoli maritime historian Peter Plowman takes the story from the planning stages and the requisition of ships through to the Gallipoli landing of 25 April 1915.

    This book tells of the mobilization of troops and sailors, requisition and refitting of ships,one convoy false start, a number of voyages, various changes of plan and destination, and the assistance offered by ships of allied navies. Included are many newspaper accounts of various events in port and on board and quotes from diaries and memoirs of sailors and soldiers involved, giving descriptions of conditions on board - training, sport, exercise, living and eating conditions, hygiene, medical examinations and supervision, even 'crossing the line' festivities; also conditions for horses - and details of convoy formation. By the time of the blooding of ANZAC forces at Gallipoli, the force had been moulded very much 'on board' and 'in transit'. Two appendices give details of all the transport ships involved.

    NZ$50.00 + delivery.

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    FALSE FLAGS.
    By Stephen Robinson, Paperback, 314 Pages, 150mm x 243mm. 0.57kg. Black & White Photographs. Line drawings. This Edition Published 2019

    False Flags tells the epic untold story of German raider voyages to the South Seas during the early years of World War II. In 1940 the raiders Orion, Komet, Pinguin and Kormoran left Germany and waged a ‘pirate war’ in the South Seas — part of Germany’s strategy to attack the British Empire’s maritime trade on a global scale.

    Their remarkable voyages spanned the globe and are maritime sagas in the finest tradition of seafaring. The four raiders voyaged across the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian oceans as well as the Arctic and Antarctic. They sank or captured 62 ships in a forgotten naval war that is now being told in its entirety for the first time. The Orion and Komet terrorised the South Pacific and New Zealand waters before Pearl Harbor when the war was supposed to be far away. The Pinguin sank numerous Allied merchant ships in the Indian Ocean before mining the approaches to Australian ports and capturing the Norwegian whaling fleet in Antarctica. The Kormoran raided the Atlantic but will always be remembered for sinking the Australian cruiser Sydney off Western Australia, killing all 645 sailors on board in devastating circumstances.

    False Flags is also the story of the Allied sailors who encountered these raiders and fought suicidal battles against a superior foe as well as the men, women and children who endured captivity on board the raiders as prisoners of the Third Reich.

    NZ$35.00 + delivery.

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    THE STORY OF HMNZS OTAGO 1960-1970
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.90kg, 148mm x 210mm, 448 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2020.

    In 1959 the New Zealand Government decided to purchase two Type 12 Frigates to begin replacing the aging WWII Loch Class Frigates.
    The Frigate Hasting, then under construction at John Thornycroft's yard at Southhampton was purchased, modified and renamed Otago.
    This is her story of the first decade of her 23 year service. 1960-1970

    NZ$40.00 + delivery.

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    THE STORY OF HMNZS OTAGO 1970-1976
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.83kg, 148mm x 210mm, 416 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2020.

    Following on from the first book in this series, this volume focuses on the next 7 years of the history of the HMNZS Otago. Encompassing years 1970-1976

    NZ$40.00 + delivery.

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    THE STORY OF HMNZS OTAGO 1977-1983
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.86kg, 148mm x 210mm, 432 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2020.

    The last volume in this three book series, this volume focuses on the last years of the history of the HMNZS Otago. Encompassing years 1977-1983

    NZ$40.00 + delivery.

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    HMNZS BELLONA 1946-1957
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.86kg, 148mm x 210mm, 414 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2017.
    HMNZS Bellona was commissioned in Chatham, England, with the New Zealand crews of the cruisers Achilles and Gambia in October 1946. On her arrival in Auckland she became the New Zealand Flagship and toured the country's ports showing the flag. Bellona made one cruise to England in 1947. She was in Australia when the 1947 mutiny occurred over pay. When the 1951 wharf strike occurred she was again in Australia and was recalled to work the wharves. Bellona made several tours of the Islands and New Zealand before being laid up in Reserve to be replaced by her sister ship HMNZS Black Prince. Recommissioned in 1955 Bellona sailed for England to be replaced by the modernised Royalist.

    NZ$47.00 + delivery.

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    HMNZS BLACK PRINCE 1946-1959
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.52kg, 148mm x 210mm, 252 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2017.
    The Royal New Zealand Navy cruiser HMNZS Black Prince replaced HMNZS Achilles in 1946 and served New Zealand well during the 1950s. She attended the Coronation Spithead Review in 1953 and visited Istanbul, Gallipoli and Greece before rendering aid to the Greek Ionian Islands following a devastating earthquake. On her return to New Zealand she escorted the Royal Yacht Gothic during Her Majesty's tour of New Zealand in 1953/54 before carrying out a Vice Regal tour of the Islands. Finally sold for scrap in 1962 and towed to Japan.

    NZ$38.00 + delivery.

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    HMNZS ROYALIST
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 1.80kg, 210mm x 298mm, 458 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2018.
    In 1955 little did Prime Minister Sid Holland know that the Admiralty was seeking someone to take the orphan cruiser Royalist off their hands and recover their ill advised expended funds.

    Royalist was a modernised sister ship of Bellona and Black Prince that the British Exchequer had strongly criticised. So the Admiralty orchestrated a plan to get rid of this orphan ship. Royalist had been poorly maintained while in Reserve after 1945. While the bridge superstructure, radars and fire control systems had been modernised to a high standard, little had been done to improve the hull, machinery and accommodation. The cruiser required 550 men to crew her with accommodation for only 500 maximum, an outdate messing system and little air-conditioning. No other British warship had her type of guns. At great cost New Zealand kept Royalist operational until a fortnight before the end of her final commission, on 1 November, 1965.

    NZ$57.00 + delivery.

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    THE STORY OF HMNZS BLACKPOOL
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 148mm x 210mm, 480 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2012.

    In 1965, in an effort to maintain four operational frigates while one was in refit, it was agreed to hire a frigate from the Royal Navy while HMNZS Canterbury was being built. Initially offered HMS Whitby it was eventually agreed to hire HMS Blackpool for a period of five years.

    This is the story of HMNZS Blackpool, and those who served in her, during her service in the Royal New Zealand Navy between 1965 and 1971.

    NZ$38.00 + delivery.

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    HMNZS CHARLES UPHAM
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.36 kg, 148mm x 210mm, 184 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2020.

    The need for a logistic support ship to provide a sealift for the Army's Ready Reaction Force was identified by the NZ Government in the 1978 Defence review.
    After a wide search it was decided to purchase the Mercandian Queen II. Renamed Sealift it was delivered to Auckland in March 1995, and commissioned later that year as HMNZS Charles Upham

    This is the story of that ship.

    NZ$35.00 + delivery.

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    A SAILOR AT HEART
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.33 kg, 300mm x 210mm, 266 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2020.

    Gerry Wright has had a wonderful, fascinating and interesting life.
    This autbiographical book was written to celebrate his 80th birthday. Hundreds of photographs and many stories record his rich and varied career.

    As Gerry would say - ' Tomorrow is too late, Yesterday is over, Now is exactly the right moment'

    NZ$55.00 + delivery.

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    PIONEER SAILOR
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.33 kg, 148mm x 210mm, 156 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2020.

    This is the story of a young lad from Kaikoura who joined the Navy in November 1907 and trevelled the world in his brief career.

    When Australia established its own Navy in 1913 the lad transferred and volunteered for the Submarine Service. On September 14th 1914 while on patrol off German New Guinea the Submarine disappeared without a trace.
    The young Lad from Kaikoura became the first New Zealander to die in the Great War.

    The Submarine was eventually found a century later.

    NZ$30.00 + delivery.

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    KIWI BATHURST TALES
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback,0.73kg, 210mm x 298mm, 174 pages. Black & white photos and colour illustrations. Published 2017.

    Following World War II the New Zealand Government modernised the Royal New Zealand Navy by obtaining from Britain the loan of two modern cruisers and purchase of six Loch Class anti-submarine frigates.

    An offer to purchase four Bathurst minesweepers from Australia in 1952 resulted in Australia gifting four surplus minesweepers, HMAS Echuca, Stawell, Kiama, and Inverell, to New Zealand.

    This book records teh history of the Bathurst Class Ships and some of the stories of those who served in them during their lond service to New Zealand.

    NZ$47.00 + delivery.

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    NORTH SEA WARRIOR.
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.56kg, 148mm x 210mm, 404 pages. Black & white photos. Published 2012.

    The story of Lieutenant Commander G J (Jim) Macdonald. DSO DSC & two bars RNZNVR

    Jim Macdonald was the most highly decorated New Zealand Naval Officer of World War II. He joined the Naval reserve in 1938 as a 16 year old ordinary seaman. Sent to England, he was promoted to officer rank and soon earned his first bravery award. he bacme the youngest man to command a Royal Navy Warship and by 23 years of age was in command of a flotilla of torpedo boats.

    This is his story.

    NZ$40.00 + delivery.

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    A KIWI SAILOR AT WAR.
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.90kg, 150mm x 210mm, 542 pages. Black & white photos. Published 2012.

    The story of Lieutenant Douglas L Hazard. RNZNVR

    Doug Hazard was one of 7,000 young men who were sent to Britain during the Second World war to help man the rapidly expanding Royal Navy. After six months escorting North Sea Convoys, he trained as an officer. He then took part in escorting convoys to East Africa, Canada via the cruel North Atlantic and Russia. He took part in the sinking of several German U-boats.

    On his return to New Zealand, Doug became well known as an accountant and yachtsman.

    NZ$38.00 + delivery.

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    THE ENEMY OF THE NEW ZEALAND COAST.
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.35kg, 150mm x 210mm, 198 pages. Black & white and sepia photos. Published 2012.

    As far back as 1870 the Russians were reported to be in New Zealand Waters, which promoted Government action. During World War I and World War II, German raiders appeared close off the New Zealand coast. (One actually landed armed men on a shooting expedition). During the Second World War, the German operations were supported by a submarine. Japanese submarines were also active off our coast.

    This is the story of those reported enemy visits and the response of the community that each caused.

    NZ$28.00 + delivery.

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    NAVAL FOOTPRINTS IN NEW ZEALAND.
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.27kg, 150mm x 210mm, 130 pages. Colour photos. Published 2012.

    This book has been written, and published, to assist travellers, with a naval interest, to see the places around New Zealand where the Navy has left its mark, or footprint. Laid out geographically from North to South, including the Chatham Islands, this little book is a wealth of facts and figures. Many many historical naval sites are shown and discussed, within time periods ranging from the Maori Wars to the Second World War.

    NZ$22.00 + delivery.

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    SALTY DITS.

    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 145mm x 204mm, 334 pages, monochrome photos.

    During the Second World War the New Zealand Government purchased three Bird class minesweepers and four Isle Class minesweepers.

    To this small fleet, eleven minesweeping trawlers were added all of them built in New Zealand along with twelve anti-submarine, B-Type fairmiles. Sixteen harbour Defence Motor Launches (HMDLs) were also opurchased from overseas.

    After the war many of these 72 foot HDMLs were retained to work around the New Zealand coast. Gerry Wright who has published five other books about New Zealand's naval histiry, had command of one of these craft in 1965.

    NZ$38.00 + delivery.

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    RAINBOW WARRIOR SALVAGE.
    By Gerry Wright. Paperback, 0.24kg, 148mm x 210mm, 130 pages. colour Photos, published 2010.

    When the Greenpeace flagship Rainbow Warrior was sunk in Auckland Harbour on July 10th 1985, it promptly became a crime scene. The Royal New Zealand Navy was tasked by the Police with raising the wreck without disturbing evidence, and to allow them to carry out a forensic examination of the wreck and harbour bed. This is the story of that salvage and how many problems encountered were overcome.

    NZ$25.00 + delivery.

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    NAVAL HISTORY




    See also: Nautical History of Polar Exploration, Nautical Tales, Yarns and Biographies,
    Nautical Dictionary and Sea Terms

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