STOLEN ANZAC LETTERING TO BE REPLACED
Metal ANZAC letters stolen in October 2014 from the Anzac Commemorative Site at North Beach in Gallipoli are to be replaced next month. There have been similar thefts of plaques, presumably by scrap metal thieves, right across the Gallipoli peninsula.
Our G&DI Australian representative, Len Thompson OAM, helped to stress the urgency of the need to replace the plaques in good time for the Anzac Centenary Commemorations. The Australian Federal Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, the Hon Michael Ronaldson, gave formal approval on Tuesday, 10 February 2015, for the work to proceed.
The eleven replacement plaques will be manufactured, packed in wooden crates and flown to Turkey by RAAF aircraft, together with a team of Australian volunteers, including Len Thompson, who will install the metal plaques in such a manner as to secure them from future attempts at theft. Len has played a leading part in the project. The volunteers intend to cover most of their own costs for the trip.
Len writes: “We now have ten volunteers, half of whom are from here on the Sunshine Coast, ready to go to Gallipoli to assist us in this project. The RAAF have been of tremendous help and have supported us for the last fifteen years in our projects along the Kokoda Trail. The RAAF are allowing us to hitch a ride with them from Brisbane to Turkey and return”.
G&DI will be contacting our colleagues at Gelibolu Derneği with a view to possibly meeting the team when they arrive in Turkey in mid-March. It is expected that the restoration work will be completed by 31 March 2015.
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