Navy Writing Competition

The Navy invite students from all ages to enter a writing competition

On 13 December 2013, the Royal New Zealand Navy will commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the River Plate. The Battle was the first major allied victory of the war and involved the New Zealand warship HMS Achillies. But it’s also an interesting story in that the Captain of German ship Graf Spee defied orders, scuttling his damaged ship and saving the lives of his crew.

The Navy will be honouring the surviving veterans with a parade in Aucklan

d on 13 December.

The Navy would like to invite students from all ages to enter a writing competition. The subject is:

“Imagine you were a sailor on HMS Achilles during the Battle of the River Plate. Write a letter to your family telling them about the battle and your thoughts on it”

A commemorative magazine has been created [PDF; 1.6Mb] which can be used as a resource; an e-version is located at on the front page. There are also numerous library and website resources on the Battle, and the Movie Battle of the River Plate is available to be viewed on YouTube.

The competition will be judged in three categories Junior (5-10 years old) Intermediate (11-13 years old) and senior (14-17 years old). Winners will receive a prize pack which will include a day out with the Navy in Devonport Auckland.

Entries can be emailed to
OR posted to Mark Sleeman, Defence Communications Group, Defence House, Aitken Street, Wellington. Please clearly state which category you are entering and provide a name and a way we can get in contact if you win a prize.

Please feel free to phone 021 925 374, if you have any questions regarding the competition.