Seedlings from Gallipoli
Avenue of Remembrance
Old Launceston Boys Honoured
The memory of the 98 old boys of the Launceston Church Grammar School who laid down their lives in the Great War, has been kept sacred by the great honour board and the magnificent chapel at the school, and will be kept fresh and green in the minds of scholars by an avenue of trees and shrubs planted on Saturday afternoon. The trees, obtained as seedlings from Gallipoli’s famous heights, were nurtured and tended through the difficult early stages by Launceston florists and gardeners, and now, as fresh and strong young plants, will, it is hoped, grow into a fine memorial avenue.
There was a large crowd at the school to witness the impressive ceremony. The headmaster (Mr. F R Adams) said that it was an auspicious occasion. The seeds were received early last year from the Imperial War Graves Commission, through Colonel Hughes, and had been entrusted to Messrs. Walker Brothers, florists, at the Sandhill, Launceston, and Mr. W McGowan, curator of Launceston’s parks and gardens. Most of them had germinated. The group included seedlings from Lone Pine, and seeds from Quinn’s Post. Lone Pine had been a glorious achievement for the men of Anzac. At 5:27 a.m. on August 8, 1915, the advance had commenced and fighting had gone on throughout the day. More than 2,000 Australians were killed or wounded in that one battle. When the Australians finally reached their objective only the stump of the lone pine was left. As to Quinn’s Post, that position lay at the head of Monash Gully through Shrapnel Gully, branch off to the right, and Quinn’s Post was at the top of the gully. Had the Turks occupied that post, they would have been able to enfilade the whole of Monash Gully. The seedlings were obtained as a token of memory of the Grammar School’s glorious dead. “We will do our utmost to zealously guard and protect them,” he said. “We are gathered to honour the men and boys of our school who answered the call of the motherland, and, in answering it, gave their lives so that you and I might enjoy the freedom so precious to our race,” said Mr. Angus McKenzie, president of the Old Launcestonians’ Association, and also president of the Launceston sub-branch of the Returned Sailors’ and Soldiers’ Imperial League of Australia. He realised that the tragedy of 1914-18 would always remain in the memories of many, but he also realised that in the meantime another generation had arisen. He reminded the boys of the school that they now occupied the desks of the men who were being honoured had occupied, and they also enjoyed the same games. He concluded by quoting Laurence Binyon’s famous lines:
“They shall not grow old as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not wither them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun, and in the morning
We will remember them.”
A telegram was received from Major W T Conder, general manager of the Australian Broadcasting Commission, as follows:-
Wish tree planting every success. One of the finest things the school has done, and a most beautiful way of keeping fresh and green the memory of the old boys who fell in the Great War.
Colonel G Harrap, acting chairman of the School Board, said that it was a very happy way of perpetuating the memory of those old boys, and he hoped that the trees would be a fine avenue of memory in 100 years time.
The trees were then planted, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, and friends of the fallen men placing them in the soil. Those who planted trees (with the name of the deceased soldier in whose memory the tree was planted in parenthesis) were:-
Mr. K M Douglas( R A Adams), Miss M Allen (M J Allen), Mr. H P Ritchie (C R Balderson), Mrs A Bennett (R H Bennett), Mrs Black (A H Black), Mrs Challis (G D Challis), Miss Cheek (W M Cheek), Mr. R L Anderson (J S Cranswick), Mr. R M Douglas (M Douglas), Mr. G M Eddie (M H Eddie), Mr. F R Evans (F R Evans), Mrs Gidley (J Ferguson), Mr. M H Hirst (A Y Flexmore), Major A A Evans (S J Game), Miss M Gatenby (L F Gatenby), Mr. Angus McKenzie ( R H Harrison), Mr. E Hart (R A Hart), Mr. C Hinman (A G Hinman), Mr. T Hutchinson (A J Hutchinson), Mrs T D Room (W R Jones), Mrs Compton (J H Lade), Miss J Anderson (R Latta), Miss von Bibra (K S Mackay), Mr. W McGowan (S McP McGowan), Mr. A J McKenzie (C T Parker), Mrs Parry (A W Parry), Mr. G P Pinel (P J Pinel), Miss N Riva (J E Riva), Mr. Robertson (G T Robertson), Mrs T K Robson (K T Robson), Mr. E Eberhard (G T Sams), Miss Compton (V L Sams), Miss Sampson (W H Sampson), Mr. Mills (C F Sharland), Mrs E E von Bibra (A Shields), Mrs F Reed (E L Smith), Mr. A Sorell (E T Sorell), Mr. E E von Bibra (E L von Bibra), Mrs Evershed (G G Woodhill).
Other fallen men for whom trees were planted were:- A Ainslie, J A Ainslie, F Allison, G B Bailey, C C Barnard, C F Boothman, E G Brain, V P Collins, F N Collins, W A Connell, R L McR Field, J A Foster, S S Garrard, L Y Gutteridge, W E O hales, G F Hall, K C Hall, L G Holmes, C R Irvine, B Kerslake, E B King, W H Krushka, E Lawson, G G Lewis, I S Margetts, H W McBean, A Rae, G Miles, P J Morgan, H C Nicholas, C A Parker, J E Peacock, J G Pearson, W C Reycraft, A V Ridge, A Sale, C F Shapira, J B Scott, R Sherwin, L B Solomon, L Tariton, B L Taylor, W Thompson, G B Todd, D D Viney, G Walken, J Webster, V G Westbrook, T J Woodhouse, C N Wright, and J B G Youl.
At the conclusion of the ceremony the school entertained the visitors to afternoon tea in the school dining-hall, and many persons took advantage of the opportunity of inspecting the new school chapel.
Mercury September 10th 1934.