The New Zealand Report 22/23

MR PHILLIP O’SHEA

It has been a momentous and historic year for the Monarchy within New Zealand and the other Realms in the Commonwealth: the death of Queen Elizabeth II and Accession of King Charles III on 8 September 2022, the late Monarch’s State Funeral and Committal in St George’s Chapel on 19 September 2022, and the Coronation of Their Majesties King Charles III and Queen Camilla at Westminster Abbey on 6 May 2023.

Membership  Two new Members joined during the year: a Life Descendant, and a Life Friend. One Friend was transferred to the dormant category. A Life Friend on the dormant list died in June 2022. The New Zealand Roll presently totals 34.

The Annual Review for 2021-2022 was issued to those members with an email address. Other members were issued with a copy of the Review by post.

News and Activities

The King’s Christmas Message 2022  Members noted that His Majesty’s Christmas message was broadcast from St George’s Chapel on 25 December 2022.

The Coronation: Westminster Abbey 6 May 2023  The Coronation ceremonial, rich in religious and historical importance, was televised in full in New Zealand.  The Governor-General, The Rt Hon. Dame Cindy Kiro and Dr Richard Davies, and Prime Minister, The Rt Hon. Chris Hipkins, headed the New Zealand delegation. Personal health precluded me from undertaking the long trip to London to join other Officers of Arms in the Abbey on 6 May 2023.

To mark the Coronation of King Charles, King of New Zealand, the Government gifted one million dollars for the planting of trees throughout the country. On 6 May 2023, a tree was planted in the grounds of Parliament Buildings, Wellington.
New Zealand Post issued commemorative coins and a set of postage stamps for the Coronation. On the Monday after the Coronation, 8 May, a special sheetlet of stamps recording the historic event was issued. A set of stamps marking the reign of the late Queen Elizabeth II was issued on 6 September 2023.

King Charles III Coronation sheetlet issued by New Zealand Post on 8 May 2023. Image courtesy of New Zealand Post Ltd.

Honours of Scotland  The King’s acceptance of the Honours of Scotland was reported by the New Zealand media.

HM Queen Camilla, ONZ  Her Majesty Queen Camilla, LG, LT, GCVO, was appointed an Additional Member of The Order of New Zealand (ONZ) in the New Zealand King’s Birthday and Coronation Honours announced on 5 June 2023.

HRH The Princess Royal  HRH The Princess Royal, LG, LT, GCVO, QSO, made a brief visit to New Zealand from 15 to 17 February 2023 for the celebrations of the Royal New Zealand Corps of Signals, of which The Princess has been Colonel-in-Chief since 1977. Unfortunately, awful weather entailed many of the planned events being postponed.

Dean of Windsor: The Rt Revd David Conner, GCVO  On behalf of New Zealand members, I extend my warmest best wishes to The Rt Revd David Conner, Dean of Windsor and Register of the Order of the Garter since 1998, on his retirement in July 2023. Congratulations to him on his promotion to GCVO on 19 July 2023, and appointment as Dean Emeritus of Windsor by The King.

The King’s Service Order and Medal  The Prime Minister, The Rt Hon. Chris Hipkins, announced on 29 May 2023 that the distinctive New Zealand Queen’ Service Order (QSO) and associated Queen’s Service Medal (QSM), instituted in 1975, will be renamed in honour of The King. At a future date there will be a change to The King’s Service Order (KSO) and The King’s Service Medal (KSM). The change will not affect existing holders of the QSO and QSM.

Mt Everest  The seventieth anniversary of the assent of Mt Everest, by Edmund Hillary (KG 1995) and Tenzing Norgay on 28 May 1953, was marked by celebrations in Nepal, and at the
Auckland War Memorial Museum in New Zealand.

Secretariat  The Honorary Secretary, Linda Aitken, and Annette Parsons of the Friends’ Office have provided much appreciated support during the past year for the small New Zealand membership.

I trust all Members will continue to keep safe during the coming year.

Phillip O’Shea, CNZM, CVO, New Zealand Herald of Arms

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The King's Free Chapel. The Chapel of the Most Honourable and Noble Order of the Garter. The Chapel of the College of St George.