Documents Relating to New Zealand's Participation in the Second World War 1939–45: Volume III
318 — The Deputy of the Governor-General of New Zealand to the High Commissioner for the Western Pacific
The Deputy of the Governor-General of New Zealand to the High Commissioner for the Western Pacific
Your secret telegram of 18 July [No. 316].
His Majesty's Government in New Zealand have decided to despatch to Fanning Island a detachment of two officers and thirty other ranks. The detachment will leave New Zealand by HMS Leith on or about 4 September and will carry out certain preliminary work. The question of stationing it permanently at Fanning Island in peace will be further considered when the preliminary work is completed.
The New Zealand Government would be grateful if you would approach Messrs Burns Philp regarding supply of labour for the construction of native huts, landing of stores, and the use of launches and lighters, for which they will reimburse Messrs Burns Philp. Probably twenty natives and one foreman would be required.
It is requested that all negotiations and discussions regarding the despatch of this detachment be kept most secret; and that the need for secrecy be impressed on Messrs Burns Philp and on Cable and Wireless, Limited.