Last glimpse of home on way to war

In late 1914, more than 40,000 Aus­tralians and New Zealan­ders left King Ge­orge Sound, bound for the Great War. One-third never re­turned. Many who did bore the scars of their ex­pe­ri­ences for the rest of their lives. This is their story.

Albany Advertiser - - NEWS -

The in­scrip­tion, which can be read by vis­i­tors to the Na­tional An­zac Cen­tre at Al­bany, neatly sums up why Al­bany played, and con­tin­ues to play, a key role in Aus­tralia’s World War I story.

And it is a story which has drawn more than 260,000 vis­i­tors to the cen­tre in the four years since it was opened at the start of the An­zac cen­te­nary com­mem­o­ra­tions.

Ships that car­ried Aus­tralian and New Zealand troops to World War I gath­ered at Al­bany in late 1914 and left for Egypt, and ul­ti­mately Gal­lipoli, on Novem­ber 1, 1914.

For many of those men the rugged shore of Al­bany was their last glimpse of their home­land.

The NAC sits in the Al­bany Her­itage Park on the edge of Mt Ade­laide, and its cut­ting-edge mu­seum tech­nol­ogy is set against the spec­tac­u­lar view over the wa­ters which saw the gath­er­ing of the con­voy.

The cen­tre, which has re­ceived a num­ber of awards since its open­ing, has ce­mented Al­bany’s place in the An­zac nar­ra­tive.

Al­bany Mayor Den­nis Welling­ton said vis­i­tor num­bers re­mained strong and the cen­tre played a ma­jor role in at­tract­ing tourists, which had spin-off ben­e­fits for the econ­omy of the re­gion.

Pic­ture: Lau­rie Ben­son

City of Al­bany Mayor Den­nis Welling­ton at the Na­tional An­zac Cen­tre.

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