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Chief Petty Officer from Napier marches on biggest stage

Chief Petty Officer (CPO) Shane Dixon has completed the biggest Royal tasking of his 34 years in the Royal New Zealand Navy.

10 June, 2022

The Napier-born drill instructor was the expert behind the New Zealand Defence Force contingent which marched down London’s The Mall in front of tens of thousands of spectators as part of Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee Pageant on Sunday.

He had to train Navy and Air Force personnel in the Army style of drill and also some of the British style of parading so they would shine on the world stage, and alongside a large number of military contingents. 

The experience in marching on this special and historic occasion was not lost on all those involved. They marched with an immense amount of pride and were a credit to themselves, the NZDF and New Zealand.


A personal highlight was marching past the Royal Dais, and paying tribute to the Queen, CPO Dixon said.

“Right from a young age I was always interested in the military and the extremely proud history associated with our Forces. 

“I have also had the privilege of being the key ceremonial instructor for both Navy and Tri-Service Royal Guards of Honour, for Royal visits to New Zealand. 

“I met Prince Charles in Edinburgh, Scotland when I was on exchange with the Royal Navy in 2011. I had a wonderful chat to him about his time in the Royal Navy as I had just been to Britannia Royal Navy College, where he also trained to be a Royal Navy officer.”

CPO Dixon said to be involved with celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee was an absolutely amazing opportunity.

This event is one that was truly special in that we, as the New Zealand Defence Force, represented the country in paying our highest marks of respect to our Queen on an occasion that will probably never happen again.


“The whole experience of being involved in such a large ceremonial event, right from the training to the final execution, was an extremely special moment.

“I have the highest amount of respect and loyalty for Her Majesty and how she been truly amazing, gracious and dignified throughout her 70-year reign as Queen.

“I especially admire her efforts in the Second World War, and the keen interest in detail she has when it comes to military parades and protocol, as well as the unwavering support she has shown towards the British and Commonwealth militaries.”