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Charles Alexander Woods

Portrait, standing in the garden 12 Domain Street, Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand - This image may be subject to copyright

Portrait, standing in the garden 12 Domain Street, Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand - This image may …


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Charles Alexander AWMM
  • Surname
    Woods AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    4 January 1912 AWMM AWMM
    Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
    Unknown AWMM 12 Domain Street, Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    Mrs V.E. Woods (wife) 12 Domain Street, Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand AWMM
  • Relationship status
    Unknown AWMM Married AWMM


Wars and conflicts

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  • War
  • Campaign
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
  • Military service
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
  • Enlistment
    WW2 AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment


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  • Embarkation details

Prisoner of war

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  • Capture details
  • Days interned
  • Liberation date
  • Liberation Repatriation
  • POW liberation details
  • POW serial number

Medical history

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  • Medical notes
    Died of Disease, Cause of Death AWMM
    Heart Failure AWMM

Last known rank

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  • Last rank

Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Charles Alexander Woods, born Auckland 4 January 1912.

    From an early age he expressed a desire to go to sea.

    In 1926, aged 14, he went to the United Kingdom to commence training on HMS "Conway'. His father, Reginald Arthur Woods, was a student on HMS 'Conway' 1887-1889. By his own admission living in a foreign country on his own when he had barely reached his teens was a frightening experience. Upon completion of his training, he found himself in the middle of the great depression when prspects of employment were poor. As a result he returned to New Zealand in 1934 and in due course joined the Union Steamship Company of New Zealand. He requested a transfer to the Australian Coastal Trade and upon this being granted he served as a Navigating Officer.

    In 1938 Woods became a Commissioning Officer with the New Zealand Naval Reserve and was mobilised for war service in September 1939, transferring to the Armed Merchance Cruise, Nan.

    In 1941 Woods found himself overseas seconded to the Royal Navy, serving in the North and South Atlantic and most theatres of war, including Burma. In 1943 he was appointed to HMS 'Eaglet' for a Commanding Officers Course, then appointed to the HMS 'Nimrod' for an anti-submarine course and attached to the Western Ocean Approaches in the North Atlantic. During this year he took passage in the Troopship"Queen Elizabeth' and then from Glasgow to New York for appointment to HMS 'Saker'. He also served with Walsh Kaiser Shipbuilding Yard, building frigates for the Royal Navy, before being commissioned to HMS 'Barbados' and returning to convoy duty in the Atlantic Ocean.

    It was during this time that he was promoted to Lieutenant Commander.

    In 1944 he was appointed Vice Commodore to Admiral Sir James Gordon Ramsay and while serving directly under him took the largest convoy to ever cross the North Atlantic from West to East with 107 ships.

    Upon arriving back in the United Kingdom Woods was appointment commanding officer for Normandy Landings. After Normandy Landings he was appointed Staff Officer with HMS 'Sheba' and engaged in intelligence work.

    In 1945 Woods commanded the HMS 'Sennen'.

    He was then appointed Captain of the HMS 'Flamingo' before being demobilised in 1946.

    At the cessation of World War II Woods and his wife moved to Hobart in Tasmania where Woods was appointed to the Marine Board of Hobart as Assistant Harbour Master, an extremely busy port at that time.

    He was then appointed Deputy Harbour Master in 1951, Harbour Master in 1965, Port Manager and Harbour Master in 1971, a post he held until his retirement in 1976.

    By the time the war had ended, Woods was a decorated officer receiving medals including the 1939-1945 Medal, the Atlantic Medal, the Pacific Medal, The Burma Star, the France and Germany Star, the Defence Medal, the War Medal, the New Zealand Service Medal and the Royal Navy Reserve AWard Medal. AWMM
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About death

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  • Death
    20 December 1998 AWMM
    Age 86 AWMM
    HobartTasmania AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name

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  • External links
  • Documents
    Information kindly provided by family AWMM

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