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Brief History of World War 2

Campbells Bay School during the war

Campbells Bay during the War

Mrs Robin Hayson

Mr Ted Davis

Mr George Carstairs

Mr Ron Hooton

Mrs Skelton and Mrs Ogle

Kennedy Park - the Army Base

Pictures from Auckland areas

Mrs Buchanan

Interview with Mr & Mrs Harold Bennett

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Research Process


Campbell's Bay Primary School

World War Two at our School

Kennedy Park or Castor Oil Bay

Kennedy Park 1947:

This is the story of what happened at Kennedy Park in Castor Bay.  It was called Castor Oil Bay in the olden days and Rahapora Pah before that.  It was named after John F Kennedy, the President of America, after he was assassinated in America in the 60's.  The Castor Bay Battery was built in 1941 and cost 72,609 pounds.  (Pounds is olden-day money.Now we have dollars)  It was in service until 1957.


The research group upstairs in the old radio room.

Castor Bay Houses: Looking towards the city from the Observation Post at Castor Bay 

Most of these houses were just pretend houses built during World War 2 to hide the fact that there were really big guns here.  The two houses at the front had pretend walls with sewn on windows - they would have looked real from a plane.  They hid guns that were big enough to fire a bomb at the city or to Silverdale -  long way away.  They were built to protect the Rangitoto Channel from the enemy.


Inside the observation post there is a mural painted so that the soldiers would know what to shoot at at night.

Tennis: Pretend tennis courts 

These tennis courts were pretend.  They hid the big water tanks that kept the water for the soldiers.  There were 120 soldiers at this camp.  They had their own sewerage system which drained out to the beach.  Other houses in the area had their sewerage collected by the night cart man - including Campbell's Bay School.  The poor senior boys had to put the cans out to be collected at night.  We are really glad we have proper toilets now at Campbell's Bay School.

Observation: Observation post concealing command centre on top floor Outside:

Then and now.

The two story observation house. It has a concrete floor in the middle and a concrete roof and even the stairs up are concrete.  Mr Carstairs lived downstairs with his family and the army were upstairs watching out for the Japanese.

Castor Bay 2: Castor Bay gun emplacement 

 A pretend house, with pretend walls, but real guns.

Castor Bay 1: Castor Bay 3: Castor Bay 4: Castor Bay 5: Castor Bay 6: Castor Bay 7:  Castor Bay 8: Search Light: A search light made out of a train engine light and oil drum.  Alexander Turnball collection PAColl-4161-20-12-11.  Campbells Bay


The boys in the gun emplacements in 2003.

Entrance: Unlock:  

 Mr Bowron unlocks the tunnel entrance for us

Black tunnel:  

 The tunnels were the darkest, blackest thing we had ever seen.  We were really glad we had lots of torches.  It was spooky.

Now the park has a playground, toilets and a big grass area where you can play cricket or walk your dog.  There is a petanque court.  There are also some really steep stairs down to the beach.  Some people paraglide from here, which means they run and jump off the cliff with a big sort of parachute, kite type of thing on their back.  We often see them from our school.

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