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ANZAC Day marks First World War centenary

ANZAC Day marks First World War centenary

In the centenary year of the start of the First World War, Christchurch is paying tribute to the bravery of New Zealand’s servicemen and women with its ANZAC Day services on Friday 25 April.

The Dawn Service in Cranmer Square commences with a military parade at 6.15am. The service itself begins at 6.30am, during which volleys will be fired, a bugler will play The Last Post and official wreaths will be laid. At the conclusion of the service families, individuals and groups will be invited to lay wreaths at the Cenotaph. The service will be projected onto a large screen.

This will be followed at 10am by a Citizens’ Service, the first to be held at the ChristChurch Transitional Cathedral.

The address at this service will be given by Mayor Lianne Dalziel and it will be attended by representatives of the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services Association (RSA), the Defence Force and various Christchurch youth groups. This service will feature music from Canterbury Brass and a piper playing Flowers of the Forest.

“The courage of those who fought for New Zealand in the First World War – almost one fifth of whom did not make it home – will always be remembered,” Mayor Dalziel says.

“Their sacrifice had a massive effect back home, with thousands of women, children and parents left without a husband, father or son. Countless others lost brothers, uncles and friends.

”Communities were devastated as the war memorials show,” says the Mayor.

“The number of proud New Zealanders who to this day attend services like these all around the country and from all generations is testament to the impact this still has on our nation.

“This year marks the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, which the country will be commemorating until 2018.

“Whether it’s in Cranmer Square, the Transitional Cathedral or one of the many other services around the city, I know the community will come together to remember the sacrifices made by New Zealanders who served and those who remained at home.

“I often reflect on those who believed the First World War would be the war to end all wars,” says the Mayor.

The Dawn Service is organised by the Canterbury Branch of the Malaya Veterans Association in conjunction with the Christchurch Branch of the RSA and Christchurch City Council. The Citizens’ Service is organised by the Council in conjunction with ChristChurch Cathedral and the RSA.

The Dawn Service will go ahead wet or fine. For more information about the ANZAC Day services, including a list of other services around Christchurch, please visit www.ccc.govt.nz/ANZACDay. For more information about the centenary of the First World War, please visit ww100.govt.nz

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