Submitted by admin on April 23, 2009 - 00:01
New Zealand's response to the outbreak of war on 4 August was quick and wholehearted. Compulsory military training had begun in 1912 and had already yielded 29,447 Territorials and 26,446 senior cadets; but there were only a few modern guns for them, many old-fashioned rifles, and little else. There were nearly 4,000 tents, but fewer than 20,000 groundsheets and no permanent camps. As administrative services existed mainly on paper, the staff corps of 100 officers and the permanent staff of 211 warrant and noncommissioned officers had to improvise almost miraculously to accommodate a field force and begin training. Trentham, Featherston, Narrow Neck, Avondale, Awapuni, and Papawai (Wairarapa) camps sprang up like mushrooms and were soon filled with busy recruits.