Details of Public Works Expenditure
Details of Public Works Expenditure
The Australian port of Darwin was bombed by the Japanese in February 1942; and in 1942–43 there appeared in the New Zealand accounts the first large expenditure on anti-aircraft defences. Perhaps an even more significant indicator of the feelings of the time, the first expenditure on underground operational centres was recorded in the same year.
The year 1942–43 saw also the first large expenditures on coastal defences, harbour defences and controlled mine bases; and again, a significant acknowledgment that shore-based defences might prove inadequate, there was considerable expenditure from 1942–43 on ‘Military Roading (including tank obstacles and road-blocks)’.
Some Government activities to assist wartime industries are also revealed. For example, from 1940–41 to 1942–43, there was substantial expenditure on linen flax factories and, in 1943–44 and 1944–45, on dehydration factories.1
The item ‘Prisoner of War Camps’ appeared for the first time in 1942–43, followed by larger expenditure in 1943–44. The first 450 prisoners of war arrived in September 1942 and were held in Featherston, on the site of a World War I military camp. This camp ultimately held about 800 Japanese prisoners. They were to be returned to Japan in January 1946.
For the first three years of war, until the 1942–43 burst of defence construction activity in preparation for a possible Japanese invasion and to accommodate United States forces, the largest construction expenditures tended to be those on behalf of the RNZAF. This work involved mainly the construction of new airfields and stations. The following brief summary appeared in the 1946 Year-book;2
1 See Chapter 8 for discussion of the linen flax industry and of services vegetable production. Some services vegetable orders required dehydration, which was also valuable in avoiding waste, when production and orders were not synchronised.
New Zealand Stations: Anderson Park, Ashburton, Gisborne, Harewood, Kaikohe, Kerikeri, Linton, Mangere, Nelson, Norwood, Omaka, Palmerston North, Rongotai, Remuera, Swanson, Tauranga, Te Pirita, Waipapakauri, Whenuapai, Woodbourne, Ardmore, Delta, Hamilton, Hobsonville, Kaitaia, Levin, Mangaroa, Masterton, New Plymouth, Ohakea, Onerahi, Rukuhia, Rotorua, Seagrove, Taieri, Te Awamutu, Te Rapa, Waharoa, and Wigram.
Pacific Stations: Bougainville, New Georgia, Guadalcanal, Halavo Bay, Green Island, Emirau, Los Negros, Jacquinot Bay, Espiritu Santo, New Caledonia, Fiji (Suva), Lauthala Bay, Nandi, Nausori, Tonga, Norfolk Island, Kaneohe, and Funafuti.
‘By March, 1941, the construction to the requirements then visualised had been completed, or was in hand, at the following fourteen stations, at a total approximate cost of £4,448,000. New Plymouth, Whenuapai, Hobsonville, Ohakea, Levin, Woodbourne, Harewood, Wigram, Taieri, Omaka, Tauranga, Nelson, Waipapakauri, and Rongotai.
‘The expansion necessary to meet the Japanese threat, and the need to accommodate the large numbers of United States air units which it was proposed to base in this country, necessitated a further drastic increase in the building programme in 1942. By March, 1943, some 37 RNZAF stations were in operation in New Zealand, the total construction costs being £11,470,000.
‘The improvement in the Pacific war situation from the end of 1943 onwards resulted in a progressive diminution in the number of stations.’
Nearly all the construction work for the United States forces occurred in the two years 1942–43 and 1943–44. Some exceptionally fast work was done, including the initial camp at McKay's Crossing, Paekakariki, and the hospital buildings in Auckland.1 A Public Works Department report says:2 ‘In the Wellington district the most noteworthy achievement was the erection within less than six weeks of camps in the Paekakariki area for over 20,000 US Marines. Other camps were built in and around the city, in the Hutt Valley, and at Masterton. Huge blocks of stores sprang up along the Wellington waterfront, in the Hutt Valley, and at Paekakariki.’
The same report says:
‘… in the Auckland district, camp and barracks accommodation was built for 29,510 personnel, containing 4,421 buildings covering a total floor area of 1,113,316 square feet. Three hospitals provided beds for 4,500 patients, in 251 buildings of an aggregate floor area of 1,005,000 square feet. New blocks of stores in and around Auckland were made up of 174 buildings of a total area of 1,733,467 square feet, of which 1,624,760 square feet was storage space.
‘Corresponding figures for the Wellington district were: camps and barracks for 26,542 personnel in 2,505,925 square feet of tents, buildings and huts; hospital beds for 2,340 patients in 59 buildings and 115 huts covering an area of 151,341 square feet; and 752,480 square feet of new storage space.’
All these figures are exclusive of a very considerable area of existing accommodation made available to the Americans.
2 Official War History of the Public Works Department, Vol. I, p. 44.
sustenance for a united states marine
Making friends with a City Milk Department horse on the Wellington wharves
services for united states camps
Installing power at the New Zealand built camp for United States Marines at Anderson Park, Wellington
food for united states forces
A United States Marine taking delivery of bacon. Foodstuffs valued at over £41 million were supplied to American forces in New Zealand and the Pacific
warehouses built for the u.s.j.p.b.
These buildings at Gracefield, Hutt Valley, were later used as War Assets Realisation Board stores
construction under reverse lend-lease
Constructing a shipyard at Auckland for the United States Navy
brides for the united states
1400 New Zealand girls married United States servicemen
|1. Military Camps||1,095||1,209||517||2,723||1,244||487||274||7,550|
|2. Coastal Fortifications and Gun Emplacements||142||135||343||794||682||205||102||2,402|
|3. Anti-Aircraft Defences||6||20||6||356||160||18||4||569|
|5. Guard Stations||4||4||23||43||16||2||1||93|
|6. Underground Operational Centres||–||–||–||62||36||2||–||100|
|7. Office, Storage, and Workshops, etc. Accommodation (excluding capital cost of new stores)||12||13||30||79||88||35||19||276|
|8. Bulk Fuel Stores (including splinter proofing and camouflage)||–||–||36||19||5||10||–||70|
|9. Internment Camps||1||2||1||107||11||8||–||129|
|10. Prisoner of War Camps||–||–||–||21||128||56||23||228|
|12. Military Roading (including tank obstacles and road blocks)||–||–||35||358||386||224||128||1,131|
|13. Machine Gun Posts||–||–||1||37||6||3||–||47|
|14. Radar Stations||–||1||12||18||10||3||–||45|
|15. Portable Huts, Warehouses, etc||–||–||105||1,092||82||9||1||1,290|
|16. Hospitals and Convalescent Depots||–||60||246||393||512||466||258||1,936|
|1. Naval Bases||68||32||125||257||317||354||255||1,408|
|2. Naval Posts||–||–||16||74||83||20||4||197|
|3. Coastal Defences||–||1||12||64||4||3||–||83|
|4. Harbour Defences||–||–||–||82||37||2||3||124|
|5. Wireless Telegraphy Stations||–||–||–||14||3||7||4||27|
|6. Mine and Armament Depots||–||–||3||59||86||18||5||170|
|7. Controlled Mine Bases||–||–||–||141||54||–||–||194|
|8. Signal Stations||–||–||2||16||2||–||–||21|
|9. Bulk Fuel Stores (including splinter proofing and camouflage)||–||15||54||39||134||163||127||531|
|10. Barracks Hostels, etc.||7||11||59||41||24||13||8||163|
|12. Offices, Storage, and Workshops, etc. Accommodation||–||–||–||19||106||86||169||380|
|2. RNZAF Stations||996||1,194||761||1,193||996||398||162||5,701|
|3. RNZAF Stores Depots||31||119||65||168||273||86||16||758|
|4. Miscellaneous RNZAF Establishments||1||11||46||65||98||43||33||297|
|5. Underground Operational Centres||–||–||–||30||25||14||1||70|
|6. Bulk Fuel Stores (including splinter proofing and camouflage)||8||7||45||238||88||12||3||401|
|7. Wireless Telegraphy Stations||10||3||6||5||9||4||2||37|
|8. Radar (Ground) Stations||1||–||17||116||137||22||–||294|
|9. Aeradio Stations||42||52||46||59||36||10||12||258|
|10. Seaplane Alighting Areas and Bases||41||10||66||216||17||2||1||353|
|11. Camouflage, Dummy Aircraft, etc.||–||–||30||108||7||–||–||145|
|12. Expeditions (Cape, Pacific, various)||4||18||37||59||56||43||37||255|
|13. Surveys and Investigations||8||6||18||21||10||5||4||73|
|2. Hospitals and Convalescent Depots||–||–||403||467||1,013||304||44||1,867|
|3. Ammunition Stores and Magazines||–||–||–||177||72||8||–||257|
|4. Office, Storage and Workshops, etc. Accommodation (excluding capital cost of new stores)||–||–||–||186||502||235||58||981|
|5. Ship Repairs1||–||–||–||13||19||3||–||34|
|6. Huts and Buildings for the Pacific2||–||–||–||29||37||–||–||66|
|1. Air Raid Shelters (erection and demolition)||–||–||7||576||108||72||30||794|
|2. Splinter proofing and camouflaging of Bulk Fuel Tanks||–||–||102||253||14||–||3||372|
|3. Fire-fighting Equipment||–||–||43||155||125||6||–||329|
|4. Black-out of Government Buildings||–||–||7||25||2||2||–||36|
|5. Accommodation for Cheese Workers||–||10||70||44||5||11||1||141|
|6. Workers' Camps (Defence, Industrial, Mines, Services Vegetable Production, etc.)||–||4||7||56||110||50||9||236|
|7. New Storage Accommodation||–||19||66||490||766||332||80||1,754|
|8. Refugee Camps||–||–||–||13||9||130||35||186|
|9. Dehydration Factories||–||–||–||–||135||276||37||449|
|10. Linen Flax Factories||1||197||298||171||23||3||–||692|
|11. Munition Factories||–||21||22||166||59||17||–||285|
|12. Reserve Stocks||121||186||769||17||28||17||–||1,138|
|grand total, all Defence Works by Public Works Department||2,957||3,773||5,297||16,799||11,543||4,850||2,248||47,466|
Due to ‘rounding’, totals may disagree with the totals of individual items as shown.page 238