Posted by David Thornton on
Auckland Remembers Those Who Stayed at Home
Each year, on 25 April, New Zealand and Australia commemorate Anzac Day to honour those who fell in battle during the many wars and conflicts over the years. The date itself marks the anniversary of the landing of New Zealand and Australian troop (Anzacs) on the Turkish Peninsular at Gallipoli.
The story of Gallipoli is part of the Australasian heritage - two young nations going to war together to serve King and Country in foreign lands.
While much has been written of the horrendous battles and campaigns of the First World War, there are no battlegrounds here in New Zealand but there are many sites which are significant to New Zealand’s involvement in the war.
Auckland Council has established a trail of 56 sites between Wellsford and Waiuku that were used during that long-ago war by those who stayed behind and played their part on the home front. The heritage trail includes halls where funds were raised to support the soldiers overseas, schools where kids followed the war on maps, the home of a sailor who won a Victoria Cross…. all adding up to a thought-provoking journey back in history.
It is not a walking trail or intended to be followed sequentially, but is designed so people can visit these sites at their own pace and learn the stories of monuments, rolls of honour, war memorial halls, significant gathering places and more. There will be signs that provide you with information at each site until 2019.
Throughout the the Auckland Region there will be many local commemorations on Anzac Day, the largest of which will be the Dawn Service at the Auckland War Memorial Museum.
The New Zealand Government has initiated a programme of events,local and national, to commemorate the 100 Anniversary of the First World War [1914-1918 and wherever you travel throughout the country you will see reminders of the war that established the Anzac tradition.