By Eleanor Lourey (Simpson Prize winner):
As we ready ourselves to commemorate Anzac Day at the Australian War Memorial, we can gain a small insight what it was like at the Gallipoli landing. Personal diaries held by the Memorial describe what it was like landing at Gallipoli on Sunday, 25 April 1915 under the heavy fire of Turkish machine guns. Although the photos accompanying this blog post do not relate directly to the diary entries, they are able to illustrate the stories in a different way.
The Simpson Prize is a competition for high school students from around Australia, with a winner from every state and territory getting the opportunity to travel to Turkey and attend the services on ANZAC Day at Gallipoli.
Among the items held at the Memorial that were issued to air crew serving in Europe, are two pairs of very interesting 1943 Pattern escape boots. The boots were designed so that an airman downed in Europe could remove a small concealed knife and cut off the top section of the boot to reveal a civilian looking shoe.
The sponson on the left hand side of the Mark IV tank was removed last year for inclusion in the Memorial’s exhibition, “1918, Advancing to Victory”.
The tank was relocated to the Memorial’s Large Technology Workshop in order to safely remove the sponson. This provided an excellent opportunity for Conservation to undertake a preservation treatment of the tank which would include a full repaint, back to it’s original colour scheme.