Bernard Freyberg was a top athlete, a brave soldier and an exceptional leader.
He was one of the outstanding field soldiers of World War One, the commander of the New Zealand Division throughout World War Two, and Governor General of New Zealand from 1946 until 1952.
Freyberg was brought up in Wellington and went to Wellington College. Over several years he won many national swimming titles and Freyberg Pool in Oriental Bay is named after him.
During World War One he joined the Royal Navy. One night in April 1915 he swam ashore in the Gulf of Saros to divert the Turks’ attention from the main landing at Gallipoli. He escaped unharmed despite coming under heavy fire and was awarded his first Distinguished Service Order (DSO).
After Gallipoli, Freyberg served in France and won his Victoria Cross for action on the Somme in November 1916.
By the end of the war Freyberg was a temporary Brigadier with two bars to his DSO, the CMG and had been six times mentioned in despatches. He was wounded nine times.
During World War Two he was Allied Commander-in-Chief in Crete and he led the New Zealanders throughout the war, gaining a third bar to his DSO.
He was elevated to the peerage, i.e. became a ‘Lord’ in 1951 during his time as Governor General of New Zealand.
Our Core Values:
- Be proud of who you are. Uphold your Family name and always try to do the right thing.
- Give it 100%, don't give up when the going gets tough and you will soon become a valued Freyberg man.
- Look after your House brothers, and help them to be their best.