Compulsory Military Training (CMT) was the tool utilised to build and sustain the New Zealand Army Divisional structure from 1950 to 1958. Instituted under the provisions of the Military Training Act 1949 and supported by a public referendum, CMT was an ambitious scheme designed to turn individual recruits into capable soldiers. CMT obliged eighteen-year-old males to undertake fourteen weeks (later reduced to ten weeks) of Initial training followed by a three-year commitment to serve in the Territorial Army, with a six-year reserve commitment. The CMT experience began with fourteen weeks of recruit training conducted at Papakura, Waiouru, Linton and Burnham after which recruits would spend three years posted to a Territorial unit. Unlike previous peacetime compulsory military training schemes that have been a feature of New Zealand life since 1909, the 1949 system would train personnel for postings to Territorial Ordnance units.
By 1953, over 28000 young men had been called up and trained in ten CMT intakes with the scheme becoming an accepted feature of life in post-war New Zealand.
As a practical way of celebrating the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, and the achievement of men completing their CMT recruit course, All Ranks of the Royal New Zealand Army Ordnance Corps (RNZAOC) of the Central Military District presented to the Central Districts Training Depot at Linton Camp the Coronation Trophy.
Taken into use from the 11th CMT intake which marched into Linton Camp in September 1953, the exact criteria for the presentation of the trophy has been long forgotten, and it is assumed that it was awarded to an outstanding student of each CMT intake.
A simple trophy based on a 25-Pounder Cartridge Case mounted on a wooden base, the Coronation Trophy consists of the following elements.
The Badge of the New Zealand Regiment, which provided the instructors to conduct the CMT intakes.
NZ Fernleaf collar badges, which was the insignia the CMT recruits wore.
The Badge of the RNZAOC, who donated the trophy.
A plaque describing the trophy.
The names of the trophy recipients engraved directly on to the shell case.
11th Intake, 24 September to 8 December 1953
378410 Private H Maniopoto, D Coy
12th Intake, 5 January to 19 March 1954
552311 Private R.J.W Oakden, E Coy
13th Intake, 22 April to 6 July 1954
461942 Driver C.R Beamish, F Coy
14th Intake,19 September to 30 November 1954
690997 Private M.E Barnes, F Coy
15th Intake, 6 January to 22 March 1955
912767 Sapper W.G Draper, E Coy
16th Intake, 31 March to 15 June 1955
676652 Private D.H Hart, D Coy
17th Intake 23 June 1955 to 6 September 1955
528553 Private J.H.S Courlay, E Coy
18th Intake, 15 September to 29 November 1955
424424 Private J.R Davis, D Coy
19th Intake, 5 January to 20 March 1956
623237 Private S Bartlett, E Coy
20th Intake, 5 April to 19 June 1956
593901 Private J Allison, D Coy
21st Intake, 28 June to 11 September 1956
825647 Sapper T.C Thomas , School of Military Engineering
22nd Intake, 20 September to 4 December 1956
624612 Private D.H Chase, D Coy 22 Intake
23rd Intake, 3 January to 19 March 1957
522938 Private M.D McConachie, D Coy
24th Intake, 2 May to 16 July 1957
579858 Private D.T.T Buchanan, D Coy
25th Intake, 22 August to 5 November 1957
827130 LCpl P.A Gill, Training Squadron, Royal New Zealand Engineers
26th Intake, 3 January to 19 March 1958
915184 Sapper I.R McEwen, Training Squadron, Royal New Zealand Engineers
27th Intake, 1 May to 15 July 1958
827495 Sapper B.R Smart, Training Squadron, Royal New Zealand Engineers
A changing political landscape brought an end to CMT in 1958, with the men who had completed the final intakes having a reserve commitment until 1966. No longer required, the Coronation Trophy was quietly retired and forgotten about.
Today the Coronation Trophy is now included in the extensive collection held by the Royal New Zealand Engineer Corps and on display at the RNZE Corps Memorial Centre (ECMC) Museum at Linton Camp.
This post provides a chronological record of the principle Ordnance units located in the Manawatu from 1915 to 1996.
In his annual report to the Quartermaster General of the New Zealand Military Forces, Major James O’Sullivan, the Director of Equipment and Stores made the suggestion that;
the time has now arrived for the establishment of a District Store at Palmerston North, as it is more central for distribution, and cost or railage would be considerably reduced.
Report of the Director of Equipment & Stores for the year ending 31 March 1914
Palmerston North Ordnance Store established
21 June 1915
Mr Frank Edwin Ford, formerly the Mobilisation Storekeeper at Nelson, was appointed district storekeeper, Wellington Military District and took charge of the Palmerston North Ordnance Store.
1 July 1917
New Zealand Army Ordnance Corps formed. Civilain staff of the Defence Stores Department staff were attested for service into the NZAOC. The Palmerston North Ordnance Store official designation became “Palmerston North Detachment – NZAOC”.
Palmerston North Detachment, NZAOC disbanded
Jan – March 1942
Central Districts Ordnance Depot established at the Palmerston North showgrounds
1 March 1941
Lieutenant William Saul Keegan, New Zealand Temporary Staff (NZTS) appointed as Ordnance Officer, Central Military District and Officer Commanding, Palmerston North Detachment, NZAOC and NZOC attached.
1 August 1942
Central Districts Ordnance Depot renamed to No 2 Ordnance Sub Depot.
Main Ordnance Depot Trentham establishes Bulk Sub-Depot at Linton Camp
31 December 1944
Fire at 2 Ordnance Sub Depot resulting in a stock loss of £225700 ($18,639,824.86 2017 value)
14 December 1945
No 2 Ordnance Sub Depot Closes and its functions assumed by the Main Ordnance Depot at Trentham and Bulk Sub-Depot at Linton
1 October 1946
Reestablishment of No 2 Ordnance Depot at Linton Camp absorbing the Main Ordnance Depot Bulk Sub-Depot. Captain W.S Keegan Officer Commanding. Headquartered in Linton, No 2 Ordnance Depot also maintains;
Ammo Sub Depots at Belmont, Makomako and Waiouru,
a vehicle Sub Depot at Trentham, and
Stores Sub Depot at Waiouru.
26 April 1947
Captain Quartermaster L.H Stroud appointed as Officer Commanding, No 2 Ordnance Depot
Captain Rennision appointed as Officer Commanding, No 2 Ordnance Depot
Reorganisation of RNZAOC Units
No 2 Ordnance Depot renamed Central Districts Ordnance Depot (CDOD).
Central Districts Ammunition Depot (Makomako, Belmont, Waiouru) and Central Districts Vehicle Depot (Trentham) formed as standalone units.
Waiouru Ordnance Stores remain a Sub Depot of Linton until 1976.
Buildings CB26 and CB27 Constructed
Major J Harvey appointed as Officer Commanding CDOD
The Central Districts Vehicle Deport (CDVD) relocated from Trentham to Linton. Buildings CB14, 15, 16 and 17 relocated from Wellington to house the CDVD.
Reorganisation of RNZAOC Units
CDVD and CDAD cease to be standalone units and become sub-units of the CDOD
New Headquarters building constructed for CDOD (Building CB18)
RNZAOC Stores Sections carrying specialised spares, assemblies and workshops materials to suit the particular requirement of its parent RNZEME workshops were approved and RNZEME Technical Stores personnel employed in these were transferred to the RNZAOC.
Major John Barrie Glasson appointed as Officer Commanding CDOD
Construction of New Clothing Store completed (CB4)
CDOD renamed 2 Central Ordnance Depot (2 COD)
Major Piers Reid appointed as Officer Commanding 2 COD
Construction of 45000sq ft (reduced to 25000sq ft) extension to Clothing store began by 2 Construction Sqn RNZE.(CB4)
7 Nov 1972
2 COD New stores building completed at a cost of $134000 and 34298 manhours. (CB4)
1 April 1976
Reorganised with the Waiouru Sub-depot becoming the Standalone Supply Company -4 Central Ordnance Deport (4 COD).
Major K.A Watson appointed as Officer Commanding 2 COD
16 October 1978
2 COD Renamed to 2 Supply Company
1 February 1979
22 OFP formed as a Sub Unit Capt. M Telfer (TF Officer) as Officer Commanding
12 May 1979
RNZASC Supply responsibilities Transferred to the RNZAOC. 2 Supply Company gains 24 Supply Platoon (Rations)
31 January 1980
Major S.D Hopkins appointed as Officer Commanding 2 Supply Company
7 March 1983
Major N.A Hitchings appointed as Officer Commanding 2 Supply Company
2 Supply Company reorganised as 5 Composite Supply Company: Consists of two sub-units:
The Linton Sub Depot which is drawn from 2 Supply Company, and
21 Supply Company. 21 Sup Coy was a Territorial Force unit based at Waiouru as a sub-unit of 4 Supply Company responsible for Combat Sups and Services. As a sub-unit of 5SCS it was relocated to Linton, intergrading with 22OFP. One of 21 Sup Coys principle Sub-Units was 47 Petroleum Platoon.
27 May 1985
Major Geoff Cain appointed as Officer Commanding 5 Composite Supply Company
47 Pet Pl under goes a major re-equipment, receiving a suit of kit including Fabric Tanks, Pumps, Filters, Meters and a limited pipeline capability. Under Captain Kit Carson, the profile of the Petroleum Operator Trade is increased as RF recruiting into the trade is increased and Pet Op courses run more frequently.
Makomako Ammunition area begins refurbishment programme to upgrade ESH’s, roading and support infrastructure.
16 November 1987
Captain G.M Gregory appointed as Officer Commanding 2 Supply Company
16 APRIL 1988
Major R.J.A Smith appointed as Officer Commanding, 5 Composite Supply Company
5CSC Reorganised as 21 Field Supply Company
Construction of New Ration Store Completed as part of Operation Kupe, the return of units from Singapore. The Old 24 Supply Platoon Ration Store that was located outside of camp by railway extension demolished.
16 December 1991
Major C.A Tarrant appointed as Officer Commanding, 21 Field Supply Company
Ready Reaction Force Ordnance Support Group (RRF OSG),transferred from 3 Supply Company Burnham and absorbed into 21 Field Supply Company. Low cost shelters CB34a,b and CB35 erected)
NZ Supply Detachment deployed to Somalia, majority of personnel are drawn from 21 Fd Sup Coy
NZ Supply Platoon deployed into Somalia relieving the NZ Supply Det
NZ Supply Platoon deployed into Somalia relieving the NZ Supply Platoon, Deployment ended in June 1994
1 March 1994
Major S.A Wagner appointed as Officer Commanding, 21 Field Supply Company
Major Chas Chalton appointed as Officer Commanding, 21 Field Supply Company
RNZAOC Supplier Trade combines with the All Arms Storeman Trade as Supply Quartermasters.
21 Field Supply Company, becomes 21 Supply Company, Royal New Zealand Army Logistic Regiment (RNZALR). Catering functions join the company as a sub-unit NOTE: this needs to be confirmed and might have happened earlier
Major H Duffy appointed as Officer Commanding, 21 Field Supply Company, RNZALR
Situated just north of the small Waikato town of Ngaruawahia, the Military Camp at Hopuhopu would for Sixty-Two years, be the home of the Royal New Zealand Army Ordnance Corps in the Upper North Island.
Located on the banks of the Waikato River and adjacent to the Main Trunk Railway line, at a glance Hopuhopu, in its remote rural location south of Auckland seems a strange place to locate an Ordnance Depot. However, despite its location, the Ordnance Depot at Hopuhopu was significant in the histography of the RNZAOC.
The significance of Hopuhopu was that it would be the first purpose-built Ordnance Depot for the New Zealand Army Ordnance Corps, with at the time of its construction the most modern Warehousing and Ammunition Storage infrastructure in use by the New Zealand Military.
Purpose-built Military storage infrastructure had been constructed early in the 20th Century at Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin; however, this infrastructure had been built on a small scale to service the pre-war military districts. The Post-Bellum New Zealand Army was in a good position; it had an experienced cadre of men to draw upon to train the building blocks of any future force. Additionally, the Army was flush with enough new and modern equipment to form and sustain an Expeditionary Force of at least one Infantry Division, a mounted Rifle Brigades, Artillery Regiment and Line of Communications troops.
The bulk of the equipment was held by Ordnance at Trentham and Featherston Camps, utilising wartime infrastructure designed to accommodate soldiers and not large quantiles of military material. Smaller amounts to support training and initial mobilisation were distributed to the new mobilisation camp at Burnham in the South Island and the Mount Eden depot in Auckland. Whilst both Trentham and Burnham had room for expansion, the existing infrastructure at those camps was deemed with a few additions, adequate for the time being with no purpose-built infrastructure constructed until 1939/40. However, in Auckland, the depot at Mount Eden was inadequate and unable to support the Northern districts and more robust mobilisation, and storage infrastructure was required.
Storage of ammunition was another concern. Existing ammunition storage across New Zealand consisted of many 19th-century era powder magazines and converted coastal defence batteries, with the bulk of New Zealand’s ammunition supply stored at Wellingtons Fort Balance. These existing ammunition storage arrangements were unsatisfactory and a more permanent solution was needed in the form of a purpose built facility.
By 1921 the site of a new Mobilisation and Ordnance Depot to support the Northern Districts had been decided upon, and in one of the largest defence infrastructure projects undertaken in New Zealand, construction of the new camp at Hopuhopu would continue throughout the 1920s with the Ordnance Depot opening in 1927. A significant project at the time the progress of construction at Hopuhopu was widely reported on with this Auckland Star article from 1925 describing the plans for the camp;
GREAT MILITARY CAMP
WORK AT HOPUHOPU
DOMINIONS’ AMMUNITION DEPOT
A SPLENDID TRAINING GROUND
Midway between Ngaruawahia and Taupiri, bounded by the railway and the Waikato River, is a long strip of land, some 500 acres in area, level excepting for an extensive hill that rises to an elevation of some ninety feet. This is Hopuhopu, site of the old mission station of the name. Once the home of peace, it is now being transformed by the engineers and men of the Public Works Department into a camp of training for war. Acquired by the Defence Department about three years ago, the Hopuhopu mission site has already been used as a camp for trainees, but it is in the rough, and the plans on which the engineers are now working aim at its conversion into a thoroughly equipped permanent military depot, to be officially known as the Ngaruawahia Mobilisation Base. When the plans are completed, it will be the chief military magazine, for the Dominion, and probably the greatest ordnance depot.
Through the courtesy of the Defence authorities and Mr E. K. James, the engineer in charge of the work, a “Star” representative was permitted to inspect the camp in the making yesterday. The site at once suggests itself as an ideal one for the purpose intended, and this idea is backed by expert engineering and military opinion. There has been some criticism of the area on the ground that it is damp, but this has proved to be a matter that can and will be easily overcome. After heavy rain, there is a degree of surface damp, caused by the matting of thick vegetable growth, but the sinking of a number of test holes has revealed a porous, sandy soil beneath, which, when the “matting” is removed, will readily allow all moisture to percolate and leave a dry surface. In fact, the site lends itself readily to perfect draining. About one hundred men are engaged in the work of clearing and building, and they have been greatly hampered in their preliminary operations by the amount of furze and blackberry that ‘successive owners of the land (including the Government) have allowed to grow on it. The furze is not so hard to clear, but an instance of the pertinacity of the blackberry was shown in a patch that was again springing to vigorous growth two months after it had been cut. Over one hundred acres have been cleared, and there remains another 150 acres to be dealt with by hook and fire.
A Varied Terrain
The great value of the Hopuhopu site is that it is adaptable to every branch of military training. A detraining platform a quarter of a mile long will be constructed on the main railway line for the embarkation and disembarkation of troops; there are large level areas for parade grounds; there are hills for reconnoitre and signalling; there is the river for bridge-train and pontoon drill, and in fact, the contour of the country will enable training in every department of military tactics. When the camp is completed, its huge stores, magazines and hutments will spread over an area of 200 acres. It is proposed to provide sanitary drainage from the latrines by a large pipe running along the railway into septic tanks, and thence into the river. The first part of the plan provides for the accommodation of a full battalion, and this will gradually be extended to mobilise and house a brigade of about 5000 men. Next year trainees of the Northern Command will sleep beneath the roofs of solid huts, instead of in tents.
In arriving at the decision to construct this great camp at Hopuhopu, the authorities were doubtless influenced by other considerations additional to the natural suitability of the site for training purposes. It is a reasonable distance from the city; yet not too near. It is not advisable that men in training should have the temptations of a city that is in too close proximity, and it is essential really that a camp containing immense stores of ammunition should be out of range of shelling by a possible hostile fleet operating, for instance, in the Hauraki Gulf. Besides, Hopuhopu is a very handy site for the mobilisation of the thousands of trainees who reside in the closely settled districts of the Waikato.
Some acres of the campsite, between the Old South Road and the river, have been reserved for residences for officers of the permanent staff, the building of which has already been commenced in the corner adjacent to the railway, line. These houses are being constructed of concrete. The whole of the ordnance department is to be transferred to the camp, which will take over a great deal of the stores now housed at Featherston. The extent of the future ordnance department at the new base may be gauged from the fact that the plans provide for five sheds measuring 40 x 500 ft, 40 x 300 ft, 40 x 200 ft, 40 x 100 ft, and 40 x 350 ft. These will lie alongside the camp railway, which runs into the camp for a distance of half a mile from, the mainline, so that stores may be received and dispatched with a minimum of labour and a maximum of speed. From the terminus of this extension, a wooden tramway is to be constructed to the foot of the hill along the base of which the magazines are being built.
The Magazine Section
No fewer than ten magazines for the storage of explosives and ammunition are provided for, and several of these are nearing completion while excavating and banking is being carried out on the site of the great laboratory to be attached to this department. The magazines are built into the hillside. They are constructed of concrete, with double walls, in between which are formed the inspecting chambers. From these chambers’ sentries may see through observation windows the thermometers which register the temperature inside and by this guide check or increase ventilation, as needed, for the explosives must be kept at a certain degree Fahrenheit. Also, the double-wall is a protection against fire. Between each magazine, a pyramid is erected from the spoil taken from the excavation. These are eave high with the roofs of the magazines and are designed to break the force of any possible explosion of one magazine, so that others may not be exploded also. The magazines are also faced by a long embankment, and are, of course, backed by the hill, so that an explosion would be confined as far as possible to the magazine area.
On top of the hill, there has been constructed an 80,000-gallon reservoir for the camp water supply. The water is pumped by a 30 hp motor from a settling tank alongside the river and ten feet below the level of its bed. The water is well filtered and regarded as pure after it has percolated into its tank, but as an additional safeguard, a chlorinating plant is to be installed.
Negotiations are proceeding with landowners on the other side of the river for the acquirement of land for a rifle range.
“Great Military Camp,” The Auckland Star, vol. LVI, no. 83, p. 5, 8 April 1925.
The Ordnance Depot would open in 1927. The original plan called for five warehouses measuring 40 x 500 ft, 40 x 300 ft, 40 x 200 ft, 40 x 100 ft, and 40 x 350 ft; what was eventually construed was a single large warehouse measuring 100 x 322 ft.
An additional Ordnance warehouse would be constructed adjacent to the original building during the Second World War. The wartime era would also see as part of a nationwide expansion of the NZ Army’s Ammunition infrastructure with additional magazines added to the existing ten magazine at the Hopuhopu Storage area and a new Ammunition Depot established outside of Hopuhopu Camp at the nearby Kelm Road.
Hopuhopu and its Ordnance Depot would survive until 1989 when as part of many rationalisations taking place across the New Zeland Defence Forces, Hopuhopu camp would be closed, and its functions passed on to other locations.
 Mark McGuire, “Equipping the Post-Bellum Army,” Forts and Works 2016.
 “Great Military Camp,” The Auckland Star, vol. LVI, no. 83, p. 5, 8 April 1925.