Peter Phipps - Post War Career

Post War Career

After the war, he commanded the training base HMNZS Philomel, where in April 1947 he had to deal with a mutiny of sailors from the base and several ships, over low pay and poor working conditions. He then became the executive officer of the cruiser Bellona. Between 1953 and 1955, he went overseas and served in a senior position in the Admiralty. He then took command successively of the cruisers Bellona and Royalist. When Phipps went to take command of Royalist in 1955, diplomat Frank Corner found that Phipps agreed that the Royalist was completely unsuitable for New Zealand's requirements, and Phipps regarded her purchase as an unmitigated disaster.

Phipps’ later career was a series of firsts for a New Zealander – he was the first NZ naval officer appointed to the New Zealand Naval Board (1957), the first to reach the rank of Admiral (eventually reaching Rear-Admiral), the first to be appointed to Chief of Naval Staff (1960) and the first Chief of Defence Staff (1963), following the establishment of the Ministry of Defence.

Phipps was knighted for his services in 1964. On his retirement in 1966, he was created Vice-Admiral. He died in a car crash on 18 September 1989.

Read more about this topic:  Peter Phipps

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