New Zealand tunnellers on board the Ruapehu

Members of the New Zealand Tunnelling Company on board the troop ship Ruapehu, on Christmas Day, 1915. The troops had left New Zealand on 18 December and arrived in Plymouth, England, on 3 February 1916. A month later they became the first New Zealanders to reach the Western Front in France.

The Tunnelling Company was largely made up of quarrymen, gold miners from Waihi and Karangahake, Railways and Public Works Department labourers, and coal miners from the West Coast of the South Island. They gave their commander, Major J.E. Duigan, some disciplinary headaches, but their experience was crucial in the underground war around Arras.

Credit

Image from J.C. Neill (ed), The New Zealand Tunnelling Company 1915-1919, Whitcombe and Tombs, 1922

How to cite this page: 'New Zealand tunnellers on board the Ruapehu', URL: http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/media/photo/new-zealand-tunnellers-on-board-the-ruapehu, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 15-Jul-2013

Community contributions


Philippe PERSYN
20 Sep 2009
Bonjour, Il existe à Dunkerque en France, la tombe d’un jeune marin dont voici le texte : Harry Ieuan C. JONES, the beloved son of Harry and Bridget Jones of Velindre Carmarthenshire Wales who dead at the Queen Alexandra Hospital Dunkirk on December 3 1918 aged 18 years. Le jeunes Jones était marin à bord du steamer « Ruapehu » de la New Zealand Shipping Compagny. Je crois que ce bateau était sous le contrôle britannique du "Plan de Réquisition des Paquebots de ligne" du 2 juin 1917 jusqu'au 22 mai 1919 et probablement utilisé comme transport de troupes. Le père est Harry L. Jones né en 1863 et décédé en 1940. La maman, Anna Bridget est née en 1873. S’il vous plaît, aidez-moi ou transmettez ce message à d’autres personnes pour connaître les cause de sa mort car cette tombe n’est pas la même que celles des cimetières de la CWGC. Je suis membre d’une société d’histoire locale, je voudrais écrire un article de presse. Merci beaucoup pour votre aide. Philippe Persyn Hello, He(It) exists in the Dunkerque in France, the grave of a young sailor of which here is the text: Harry Ieuan C. JONES, the beloved its of Harry and Bridget Jones of Velindre Carmarthenshire Wales who dead at the Queen Alexandra Hospital Dunkirk one December 3 1918 aged years 18. Young people Jones was marine aboard the steamer " Ruapehu " of New Zealand Shipping Compagny. I believe that this boat was under the British control of the " Plan(Shot) of Requisition of the Passenger ships of line " from June 2nd, 1917 till May 22nd, 1919 and probably used as troop transportation. The father is Harry L. Jones been born in 1863 and died in 1940. The mom, Anna Bridget was born in 1873. Please, help me or pass on this message to the other persons to know cause of its death because this grave is not the same that those of the cemeteries of the CWGC. I am member of a society of local history, I would like to write an article. Thank you very much for your help. Philippe Persyn

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