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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 1 (April 21, 1927)


I wish to say how pleased I am that you have been able to carry through so successfully the important work which fell to your lot in connection with the transportation of Their Royal Highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of York, during their recent tour through the Dominion.

As Minister of Railways, I am proud of the performance which the Department has thus put to its credit, and as head of the Government, I desire to express my colleagues' appreciation of the splendid manner in which all members of the Service rose to the occasion throughout the period of the Royal Visit.

From the Railway Board.

Although an expression of thanks has already been conveyed to the staff by circular on the conclusion of the tour of Their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of York, the Board feels that the occasion should not be allowed to pass without also placing on record in the magazine a full acknowledgment of the excellent work performed by all members of the Service who were in any way concerned with the arrangements.

The programme which the Department was required to carry through was an exceptionally heavy one, involving the preparation of special services in each Island and the running of almost ten thousand train miles by the Royal, Pilot, Emergency and empty trains called for by the Dominion itinerary.

The whole of this preparation and transportation was performed, not only without mishap, but with a spirit of helpfulness which reflects the highest credit on everyone concerned.

The Board is sensible of the fact that but for the cordial assistance rendered in every sphere by the men engaged on the work, from the building of the trains to their running, catering, and protection, the completion of the programme, correct to the finest detail, would not have been possible.

In recommending that the Railways should be utilised to so great an extent for the journeys in both Islands, the Government showed its confidence in their capacity to meet the requirements, and, at the conclusion of the tour, with information available from every source, the Board is fully assured that no trace of fault has been found with the manner in which the staff fulfilled their functions.

On many occasions emergency conditions had to be dealt with, but in every instance the men concerned proved adequate to the occasion, whilst the smooth dove-tailing of branches in the correlation of their work was a marked feature of the tour.

The result was an achievement which gained the warm appreciation of our Royal visitors and is one which the Railway administration and the staff of the New Zealand Railways may look back upon with pride. But it served a further purpose; for the manner in which the railwaymen of New Zealand stood together in their whole hearted endeavour to make the most of this opportunity to show both their loyalty to their Empire and the quality of their craftsmanship has helped to raise still higher the estimation in which the Railways are held by the [unclear water damage: public of] the Dominion.