NZAOC June 1935 to May 1936


The strength of the NZAOC on 31 May 1936 was 30, consisting of;

  • 5 Officers,
  • 25 Permanent Other Ranks

Key Appointments

Director of Ordnance Services

  • Major Thomas Joseph King,

Assistant Chief Ordnance Officer

  • Captain W. R. Burge, M.C., NZSC

Ordnance Officers

  • Captain E.L.G Bown, NZSC

Ordnance Officer (Provision)

  • Captain H. E. Erridge

Northern Command Ordnance Officer

  • Lieutenant D. L. Lewis

Central Command Ordnance Officer

  • Captain W. R. Burge, M.C., NZSC

Southern Command Ordnance Depot

  • Lieutenant D. Nicol

Inspecting Ordnance Officer and Ordnance Mechanical Engineer

  • Captain I. R. Withell, RNZA

Assistant Inspecting Ordnance Officer and Assistant Ordnance Mechanical Engineer

  • Lieutenant S. B. Wallace.[1]

Proof Officer, Small Arms Ammunition, Auckland

  • Honorary Lieutenant J.W Fletcher, NZPS


Some improvement had been effected in the position that existed last year. One junior officer was sent to England to attend the Ordnance Mechanical Engineers’ Course, another with a B.E. degree had been identified for appointment after experience in a civilian workshop to be  posted to the Main Ordnance Depot at Trentham. An additional officer should be appointed this year for administrative work at the Main Ordnance Depot.

Other Ranks (Including Civilians)

Four men were selected for appointment as armourers and will be trained under a Warrant Officer (Armourer Sergeant-Major) from the Royal Army Ordnance Corps, England, who had recently been appointed. An additional instrument-repairer (ex-Warrant Officer, R.A.0.C.) had also been appointed. Two armourers for the Royal N.Z. Air Force will receive their initial training at the same time. A laboratory foreman, whose duties comprise the testing of gun ammunition, had received training in Australia during the year.

NZAOC appropriations year ending 31 March 1936

NZAOC appropriations year ending 31 March 1936

Ordnance Services

The NZAOC was responsible for;

  • the provision, distribution, repair, examination, and maintenance of small arms, machine guns, vehicles, clothing, equipment, and general stores;
  • the inspection and repair of armament and inspection of gun ammunition ;
  • the receipt, testing, storage, and issue of small-arms ammunition;
  • the organization and control of ordnance workshops.

Equipment and stores required for the Territorial Force had been maintained during the year in serviceable condition. Very careful attention had been paid to the inspection and testing of small-arms ammunition, some of the older stocks of which showed signs of serious deterioration. All ammunition issued for use in rifles was carefully tested before issue, and ammunition found unfit for rifles were either issued for use in machine guns or broken up, according to its condition.

Equipment and Stores

It had not been possible to effect any improvement in the very unsatisfactory position regarding reserves of equipment and stores, as reported in the previous year.

Stores Buildings and Workshops

Sketch plans of additional storage and workshop accommodation at Trentham had been prepared for inclusion in the latest estimates. The buildings required comprise two large storehouses, to be served by an extension of the existing railway siding, and various additions and alterations to the workshops. A substantial economy in staff and administrative expenses would result from the carrying out of this work.

At Burnham Camp, a small building to accommodate single civilian personnel of the Ordnance Depot had been erected, but additions were required to meet an increase in the number of men employed at this camp.

Copyright © Robert McKie 2018



[1] Relinquished the appointment of Assistant IOO and OEM to attend a course in England 15 February 1936. “Appointments, Promotions, Resignations and Transfers of Officers of the NZ Military Forces,” New Zealand Gazette No 19 (1936).

One thought on “NZAOC June 1935 to May 1936

  1. Pingback: NZAOC Between the wars – "To the Warrior his Arms"

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