6.15am: the parade begins from the RSA building on Armagh Street
6.30am: the service begins centred around the memorial cenotaph
7.15am: the service concludes with wreath-laying
Organised by the Canterbury Branch of the Malayan Veterans Association in conjunction with the Christchurch Branch of the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association (RSA) and Christchurch City Council. Mayor Lianne Dalziel will lay a wreath on behalf of the citizens of Christchurch.
Linwood Community Arts Centre (corner Worcester and Stanmore Road). Anzac Exhibition 2016 Monday 11 April – up to and including Anzac Day. A multi-media participatory experience on the theme, “We honour, we remember, we reflect”. Photographs, artworks, installations, talks, readings, poetry and prose, printed and audiovisual material.
Friday 25 April 2014 is Anzac Day. Christchurch is currently celebrating Anzac Day with a Dawn Service in Cranmer Square (where a temporary cenotaph is erected) and a Citizens Service at the ChristChurch Transitional Cathedral in Latimer Square. The details for each service are available on the Christchurch City Council website. For the locations and times of other commemorations around Christchurch details can be found on the RSA website.
Each year many wreaths and bouquets from the Dawn Service end up at the statue of Sgt Henry James Nicholas V.C. M.M., northwest of the Bridge of Remembrance on Cambridge Terrace.
Henry Nicholas was the first soldier from the Canterbury Regiment to be awarded the Victoria Cross. He died in action on 23 October 1918 aged 26. He was awarded the Military Medal posthumously for his bravery during the fight for the bridgeheads at the River Ecaillon near the village of Beaudignies on 23 October 1918, 12 days before the New Zealanders’ capture of the town of Le Quesnoy.
This amazing story from World War I raises the “dog ate my homework” excuse to a whole higher level. “The tiger ate my arm” is no excuse for missing military service it seems. How would that play in these PC and health and safety conscious times? Leopold George Dyke Acland (1876 – 1948) was the author of a well known series of books – Early Canterbury runs and served in the First World War despite having lost an arm in a tiger attack.
Acland lead an adventurous life. He began his working life on high country stations Mt Peel and Cracoft Station. He then bought Glentanner Station near Mt Cook. He served in the Boer War with the 3rd New Zealand Contingent known as the “Rough Riders”. In 1902 he joined an expedition to New Guinea.
After the war he sold Glentanner and briefly owned Lavercost Station at Amuri. He sold this in 1906 and went on a tour to India where he lost his left arm in a tiger attack. Acland’s obituary in the Press described the event. Acland, an English officer and an Indian sergeant major set out bait for a tiger that had been attacking local people. They managed to wound the tiger but while tracking it were suddenly attacked. Acland was dragged away by his arm and only rescued when the sergeant major managed to kill the tiger. Asked what he felt he replied “Oh! I felt no pain but what worried me was the stinking breath of the beast after it had been feeding on dead horse”.
From India he went to Japan and managed a shipping office in Kobe. After a trip on the trans-Siberian railway to Moscow and St Petersburg, he went on to London and then back to New Zealand buying more sheep stations – Braemar in the Mackenzie Country followed by North Clumbar at Hororata.
At this point the First World War came along and despite his missing arm he joined the Army Service Corps and won the Military Cross at Gallipoli. The NZASC was not usually a front line unit, providing logistical and administrative support, but at Gallipoli geography changed that. The army would not normally have taken a one armed man on overseas service but Acland had past army service and good connections so that was probably how he managed it. His later army service on the Western Front was on the staff of General Alexander Godley (nephew of John Robert Godley) who was commander of the ANZAC troops at Gallipoli and later on the Western Front. Acland rose to the rank of major, was mentioned in dispatches three times and was awarded the O.B.E.
Other stations he owned during or after the war included Loburn and Cecil Peak. He continued farming part of North Clumbar. Early Canterbury Runs was published in 1930 and revised in 1946 and he wrote numerous newspaper articles. He was famed for his wealth of stories (not all of them printable) about early days in Canterbury. He married his childhood sweetheart in 1935. In later years he lived at Hororata.
This man surely deserves a book and somehow dying at Number 50 The Esplanade Sumner, in 1948, seems a rather tame ending.
Thursday 25 April 2013 is Anzac Day. You may have noticed last year that many wreaths and bouquets from the Dawn Service ended up at the statue of Sgt Henry James Nicholas V.C. M.M., northwest of the Bridge of Remembrance on Cambridge Terrace.
Henry Nicholas was the first soldier from the Canterbury Regiment to be awarded the Victoria Cross. He died in action on 23October 1918 aged 26. He was awarded the Military Medal posthumously for his bravery during the fight for the bridgeheads at the River Ecaillon near the village of Beaudignies on 23 October 1918, 12 days before the New Zealanders’ capture of the town of Le Quesnoy.
The eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month – Armistice Day – commemorates the armistice signed between the Allies and Germany in 1918. In 2011, Armistice Day commemorations will be held on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, and also the eleventh year of the century (11am, 11 November 2011).
Before the earthquake, the bells of the ChristChurch Cathedral would ring at 11 o’clock in the morning to mark the time, something we will be missing this year.
Instead, following the observation of a two-minute silence at 11am, a service will held at the Henry Nicholas V.C. M.M. statue in Remembrance Park, on the corner of Hereford Street and Cambridge Terrace (adjacent to the Bridge of Remembrance). The service is to commemorate those members of the armed forces who were killed during World War I .
Anzac Day is celebrated on 25 April every year in New Zealand and Australia to remember all the members of the armed forces who served in the two World Wars and other major conflicts, such as the Vietnam and Korean Wars. Children can learn some interesting facts about Anzac Day and some of the wars that our troops fought in by:
For a long time, Anzac Day just meant to me another public holiday and yummy Anzac biscuits for morning tea, until our family discovered a personal connection. Delving into our family history, we discovered that my grandmother’s favourite brother, my Great-Uncle Tom, had fought and died at Gallipoli on Anzac Day, which was poignant for me and fascinating for my sons!
Corporal Gillanders, modest and brave, was shot through the head whilst passing an order.
We also found more information about him on the Cenotaph database. Now on Anzac Day we always set up a photo of Great-Uncle Tom, with a poppy next to it. We will remember him.
Many New Zealanders have a relative who fought, and possibly died at Gallipoli or in other World War One battles. Christchurch City Libraries’ New Zealand At War and Anzac Day resources have an amazing amount of information for people interested in the wars that New Zealand has been involved in and researching the personal stories of soldiers.
Has anyone else researched their relatives who fought at Gallipoli? How do you mark Anzac Day? Is it more than just Anzac biscuits for you?
A view of Beach V, one of the initial landing points for troops, Gallipoli Peninsula. 1915.
Source: The Canterbury times, 28 July 1915, p. 39. File Reference: KPCD-03-048. From the collection of Christchurch City Libraries. Collated for 2009 Beca Heritage Week’s ‘Doves & Defences’ – Discover Christchurch in Peace and Conflict
Do you have any photographs of war time? Contact us.
Contact us if you have any further information on any of the images. Want to see more? You can browse our collection here.