Anzac Day 2020

Anzac Day is the solemn day of remembrance of those Australian and New Zealand Army Corps soldiers who have fought and died for their country. It is marked annually on 25 April, the anniversary of the Gallipoli campaign of the First World War.

The above paragraph is taken from this page about Anzac Day and if you scroll down the page there’s an overview of the meaning of Anzac Day.

When we went for a walk on the eve of Anzac Day we noticed that despite our NZ lockdown the western end of our local Returned Services Association or RSA building has a display for the occasion so I asked Nigel to take photos.

Most communities in NZ would normally have a Dawn Service on Anzac Day but not this year due to the lockdown.

Anzac Day Display, Tapanui

— West Otago, New Zealand

Click on any photo to enlarge

Text of the above information :

At the conclusion of the First World War in 1918, many captured and surrendered weapons were shipped back to New Zealand to be mounted and displayed in communities as war trophies.

However, the pacifist movement of the 1930’s saw many of these trophies removed from public display and disposed of. Those which did remain suffered the ravages of time, leaving only a very small number left in existence today.

Tapanui is fortunate that this war trophy awarded in 1921 is still in existence. It is an excellent example of an extremely rare trench mortar, known as Flugelminenwerfer.

The mortar has a smooth unrifled bore of 24cm. lt’s total weight in firing condition was 1,270kg, requiring a team of 42 soldiers to service it in action. For transportation the whole assembly was mounted on a wheeled carriage; the wheels always being removed before firing.

The mortar fired a shell weighing about 100kg to a distance of between 450m to 1,250m depending on the charge used, and fired about 20 rounds an hour. The shells used were all highly explosive and fuses could be set for either instantaneous or delayed detonation.

The mortar was fired by a lanyard attached to a detonator. The two pulleys through which the lanyard was guided are still present in the rear of the mortar.

Text by Liz, photos by Nigel; Exploring Colour (2020)

5 thoughts on “Anzac Day 2020

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    1. Indeed – not just a the men that died but their families too – all those husbands, fathers and sons. I can’t imagine how terrible that must be, particularly in small communities where most people know each other.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. I was reading a bit more about that mine launcher – a pretty terrifying piece of hardware, a real bunker-buster. We’ve devoted so much inventiveness and wealth to creating these weapons – I find a lot of military technology is fascinating, and you can argue, that it’s constructive to have these things on display, to help people appreciate, in some small way, what soldiers face when we send them off to war.

    Liked by 1 person

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