Marking centenary of day the guns of war fell silent

Marking centenary of day the guns of war fell silent

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LEST WE FORGET – The Flanders Fields Memorial Garden at the Australian War Memorial.

LEST WE FORGET – The Flanders Fields Memorial Garden at the Australian War Memorial.

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THE Australian War Memorial will hold a program of events to mark the centenary of the Armistice that ended World War I.

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THE Australian War Memorial will hold a program of events in October and November to mark the centenary of the Armistice that ended World War I.

The culmination of four years of commemorative activity, the program begins on October 5  and will focus on the significance of the Armistice in 1918 and the overall impact of the Great War.

Its centrepiece will be the placement of 62,000 handcrafted poppies in the Sculpture Garden on the memorial’s western grounds, representing Australians killed while serving in the war.

The display is the final phase of the 5000 Poppies Project, which has created some memorable  commemorative exhibits since 2013, both in Australia and overseas, in partnership with premier landscape designer Phillip Johnson.

Project creator Lynn Berry said the display is the work of thousands of people from around the world. 

“It is a fantastic way to finish what has been a labour of love, and what will be an unforgettable tribute to those who lost their lives in the First World War,” she said.

The poppies will be complemented by a musical program assembled by memorial artist-in-residence Chris Latham, and evening lighting in the memorial grounds.

A digital display will explore the stories and wartime connections of the poppy-knitters and members of the public. Names from the Roll of Honour will continue to be projected onto the facade below the dome of the Hall of Memory. 

The Commemorative Area, where visitors can hear the names and ages of those listed on the roll as read by primary school students, will open to the public on selected nights throughout this period.

A special exhibition will look at the impact of the conflict and subsequent wars on those who served, on their families and loved ones, and on Australian society.

The commemorative program will close with the national ceremony on Remembrance Day, November 11, and the Last Post ceremony that evening.

The day will feature the eulogy of the Unknown Australian Soldier on the 25th anniversary of its first recitation by then prime minister Paul Keating.

The memorial is open 10am-5pm daily (closed on  Christmas Day).

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