ANZAC Day - 25 April
The letters ANZAC stand for "Australian and New Zealand Army Corps", Anzac Day remembers the Australian and New Zealand forces who have gone to war. ANZACs were originally the soldiers who had fought a famous battle at Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I.
What happened in Gallipoli?
During World War 1, Australian and New Zealand forces fought under the command of British forces. Britain was at war with Germany and Australia showed its loyalty to Britain by sending troops to help fight germany at its allies.
Australian soldiers were ordered by Britain to land at Gallipoli to slow down enemy advances there. On April 25th, 1915 they landed at a place now called ANZAC Cove, it was an extremely difficult and many Australian soldiers were either killed or wounded. Soldiers who fought there became known for their bravery and determination. This was a campaign that could have never be won but the bravery of the men who took part will never be forgotten. About 7000 Australians and 8000 New Zealanders were killed at Gallipoli.
ANZAC DAY TODAY
ANZAC Day is a day when people in Australia remember all the men and women who have served in the armed forces. ANZAC Day (25 April) is a national public holiday, in all states of Australia.
ANZAC Day is not a celebration of war but a day for Australians remembering those who fought or lost their lives while fighting for their country. ANZAC day commemorate those who fought at Gallipoli, today it now honours the Australians who served in both World Wars, Korea, Vietnam Bosnia, East Timor, Afghanistan, Iraq and in other conflicts around the world.
ANZAC Day begins with a solemn dawn service honoring those who have died serving the country in war, these services are held in all states. As the sun rises, people pay tributes and lay wreaths of flowers at grave sites. Other say prayers at war memorials all over the country.
The Ode a poem written in 1914 by Laurence Binyon is recited and there is always a one minute silence before the "Last Post " is played by a lone military bugler as a final mark of respect.
ANZAC DAY - Lest We Forget
Photos from the ANZAC Day March 2007Click thumbnail to view full-size
The Ode of Remembrance
The Ode of Remebrance is part of a poem called "For the Fallen",written by Laurence Binyon in 1914.
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.
ANZAC DAY March
By mid morning, ANZAC Day march is held and watched by thousands of people, those who have served proudly display their ribbons and medals and remember those who fought beside them and lost their lives. Descendants of those who served also march on this day.
The rest of the day is devouted to reunions of former service personnels and their family. After the march, many former soldiers get together at RSL (Returned and Services League) Clubs to have a drink and catch up with old friends and comrades.
Two-up in the trenches
A favourite pastime on Anzac Day is playing a gambling game called two-up. It is illegal to play two-up without a gambling license but on Anzac day, the authorities look the other way.
The soldiers played two-up to keep the spirit up at Gallipoli, so the game is a way of remembering the ANZACs
During World War 1, a group of women decided to make biscuits to send to the soldiers which would be full of nutrition but would also keep for a long time. They were made with rolled oats, sugar, flour, coconut butter and golden syrup.
They were called Soldiers biscuit at first but after Gallipoli the name was changed to ANZAC Biscuits.