The Navy Museum Blog

Updates, news and images from the Royal New Zealand Navy Museum

Breaking Down the Barriers

The story of a very special exhibition.

Posted on August 14, 2012
Filed under: Video
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  1. A very good pportrayal of the WRNZS over the years from WWII. Well done.

    Comment by Margaret — September 20, 2012 @ 1:52 am

  2. Well done team, I feel so proud of this achievement, It was such a privilege to work along side such a great team. You have made a wonderful job of the video,I feel so proud of you all, thank you.Margaret Mitchell

    Comment by Margaret Mitchell — September 20, 2012 @ 4:36 am

  3. A fantastic video. Very well put together by the museum staff, a good story told for future generations.

    Comment by Anne Mckenzie — September 20, 2012 @ 5:27 am

  4. 1954 to 1959 were some of the best years of my life…The WRNZNS as it was then transformed me from an introverted, shy soul to a leader. A quality I didn’t know I had until I was thrown into a Leadership role by a very wise Wren Officer. Camaraderie which led to life long friendships – just one of the many positives of being a Wren.

    An excellent portrayal of life in the WRNZNS Well done.


    Comment by Yvonne Watson — September 20, 2012 @ 5:28 am

  5. Congratulations to all those who contributed to this short film. It has been a privilege to have been a small part of conserving the history of the WRNZNS for posterity and indeed to have served in our navy.

    Comment by Jan Maw — September 20, 2012 @ 6:50 am

  6. Absolutely fantastic. Congratulations to you Margaret and all who contributed to the making of this short video. I know myself personally that I thoroughly enjoyed my time in the Navy and have never regretted joining at a young age. An excellent portrayal of our girls that joined WRNZNS. Well done.

    Comment by Jude Waddell — September 20, 2012 @ 8:33 pm

  7. Thanks Production team for a great video. Margaret,Jill,Daphne and Aline,your hard work and many hours of dedication to this project is to be congratulated. I am proud to have been a part of WRNZNS history.
    Sue Maguire

    Comment by Sue Maguire — September 20, 2012 @ 10:07 pm

  8. Hi Everyone, I enjoyed the small piece of history. As you may have guessed, I am an ex WREN. I served from ’75 to ’78 and I had a sister there also. My surname was Stidder and I served as a steward. Yes, those were the happiest years of my life. I wish I had been able to serve more but the pull of travel was strong. I now reside in Kansas in the USA. I am on Facebook if you would like to talk. I check at least twice a week when I can. I have made my last trip back in 2005 and was amazed at how Devonport had changed. The Splade, was no longer the meeting place that I new. I have also found the Stewards reunion posts by some of the guys I had worked with. Not for though as most them did al lot of time at sea. God Bless to everyone and maybe sometime if another reunion is planned I will try to make it. Thanks. Nellie

    Comment by nellie purdue — September 21, 2012 @ 2:51 pm

  9. What a great video – thanks to all those who worked for that and made it possible. My number was 1127, and I joined in 1958. Trained for Signals and after 6 months in the MSO transferred to Navy Office (Wakefield), living out at Fort Dorset. In 1960 I went to UK and joined WRNS (No. 117581)as a radio communicator for 4 years – what a wonderful time I had at both ends of the earth! I found all Wrens had so much in common it was easy to make friends – and keep them. Best wishes Pat.

    Comment by Pat Tootill (nee Sucksmith)) — September 22, 2012 @ 3:02 am

  10. Hi, I’m not a WREN of course, but spent time with many, and worked along side them…this video is pretty fantastic..well done, and the very best to you all

    Comment by Rod Hinchco — September 23, 2012 @ 11:58 pm

  11. Thanks to all concerned in the preparation of the video. I spent five happy years 1950/55 Many great memories and long standing friendships

    Margaret macdermott (Prendergast) Malta

    Comment by Margaret Macdermott — September 24, 2012 @ 6:55 am

  12. Kia ora Jennys’ I cound your movie about the Wrens excellent, and infact recognised a few faces. I also liked the way that you Ladies had included fotos of Ladies who had attended during your Reunion. God Bless, Mike “Subs” Subritzky.

    Comment by Mike Subritzky — September 25, 2012 @ 3:02 am

  13. Very good video. Nice to see myself in the whaler – 4th from right, and between Murrae Ewart and Joan Norgrove, with Val Diack further right. There is a book that says I am Margaret Wilson – sorry, but no! Auckland Anniversary regatta 1960.
    Pat Toothill -great to see your message, as I often wondered where you were.
    I have nothing but fond memories of my days in the WRNZNS 1957-60. Naval training has always stood me in good stead and was a great basis for my subsequent career as a Regestered Nurse.
    Best wishes to everyone.

    Comment by Valerie McPhail — October 5, 2012 @ 12:15 am

  14. Thanks ever so much Margaret and your team. It was great to be reminded of a very happy time in my life from 1963 to 1966. And yes, some of the exhibits did bring back memories and like someone else said changed a shy young girl into one with a lot more confidence that has stood me in good stead. I hope to be in Auckland one day and maybe see some of the display. Best wishes to everyone. Pat Bellhouse.

    Comment by Pat Bellhouse (nee Folley) — October 6, 2012 @ 10:56 pm

  15. what a great reunion. so good tobe home again and to see so many of the old girls. the navy museum was so exciting to see. what a wonderful job the team did. the navy was the best time of my life, made so many friends,some of whom i still keep in touch with. hope to be able to make it to the next reunion. i served from 55 t0 58, so you can see i am one of the old girls. keep up the good work, hope to see you all in 2016

    Comment by shirley kermeen hudson — October 19, 2012 @ 3:50 pm

  16. Breaking Down The Barriers. Wow it just blew me away. Margaret seeing you and hearing you was fantastic, I remember you from back then. I thank you and your Team for the Wonderful Work you all have done. I was only in the Navy for a short time April 1964 to May 1966. Discharged upon the Grounds of Marriage. I still have many memories of the girls I met, first at Margaret House then at Elizabeth House. Wonderful places. Bless You All.

    Comment by Ngaire Scobie (Nee Turley) — April 5, 2013 @ 1:14 am

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