• Australian War Memorial Fromelles tour, 2010

    Friday 19 February 2010 by Peter Burness. 7 comments

    A unique and remarkable ceremony of Australian national significance will be conducted in France on 19 July 2010. It will be the culmination of the long search for those killed, and whose bodies were never recovered, in the disastrous Battle of Fromelles in French Flanders 94 years ago. Now discovered, 250 bodies are finally being laid to rest in the specially constructed Fromelles Pheasant Wood Military Cemetery. The first burials of …

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  • Final Simpson Prize post

    Monday 18 May 2009 by Andrew Gray. 6 comments

    The Simpson Prize students have now been back in Oz for just over two weeks  - enough time to re-adjust and reflect on our experiences.   Here are some thoughts from most of the gang.  This is the final blog entry, so thanks to those who have followed the experiences and for any year 9 or 10 students interested in applying to this year's competition, you can see what sort of experience the winners have on their trip. …

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  • Students from around Australia

    Tuesday 28 April 2009 by Andrew Gray. 7 comments

    Simpson Prize students (left to right) Nic, Eleanor, Meg, Madeleine, Erin, Lauren, Varun and Johanna at the 57 Regiment Memorial It's always interesting and entertaining for me to discover the character of the young Aussies who come on the Simpson Prize trip.  Here's a rough sketch of each one. Erin from NT is an enthusiastic traveler who is excited by just about anything - driving onto a car ferry, driving off a car …

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  • Recovery and return

    Tuesday 28 April 2009 by Andrew Gray.

    Varun and Onder, our bus driver, laying a wreath at the Turkish 57th Regiment Memorial The return to the hotel after our big Anzac morning was a chance to relax, catch up on sleep and do whatever we felt like.  As it was a lovely warm day, Maddy and Lauren braved the waters for another swim, others walked and talked on the beach, Varun learnt card games - Pisti and Kapti Kacti - from our bus driver, while the more …

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  • Anzac Day

    Sunday 26 April 2009 by Andrew Gray. 11 comments

    View of Dawn Service from our seats Well, by the look of all the comments we don’t have to tell you what we’ve been up to, as you’ve seen us in action on TV.  Before Lone Pine, though, we had of course been at the Dawn Service at North Beach.  We got up after midnight, dressed warmly (some with every layer they possibly could) and headed off to the site.  It was amazing to see the place full of people in …

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  • The frontline and the coast

    Saturday 25 April 2009 by Andrew Gray. 7 comments

    Simpson Prize group rugged up during the trip up the Anzac coastline Today we braved the elements and walked the frontline at Anzac from Lone Pine to Walkers Ridge.  Lone Pine is the site for the main Australian service on Anzac Day so it’s full of action with seating stands, a/v equipment, catafalque party rehearsals and musicians trying to warm up.  Many of the soldiers we were to present had no known grave, so we …

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  • Cultural exchange in Helles

    Friday 24 April 2009 by Andrew Gray.

    On the way down Rhododendron Ridge The day before our big night at Anzac dawned clear and sunny.  While there was still a cool breeze blowing, we were pleased to see a change in the weather.  The plan for the morning was to travel down south to Helles and visit site of some of the big battles in this area.  However, we hadn’t counted on the enthusiasm of Turkish authorities to close off roads due to memorial …

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  • Reflections on first visit to Anzac Cove

    Friday 24 April 2009 by Andrew Gray. 12 comments

    Simpson Prize students on the Cannakale Ferry By Eleanor Lourey (Simpson Prize winner): Being here for Anzac Day seems so much more important now that I have learnt so much about WWI and the Gallipoli campaign.  Seeing so many Australian graves makes the whole day more purposeful to remember and commemorate their lives.  Seeing what some of the relatives had written on the gravestones made it seem so much more real and…

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  • First day at Gallipoli

    Thursday 23 April 2009 by Andrew Gray. 1 comments

    Grave of Major EC Oldham A very pleasant drive down to the Gallipoli Peninsula through fields of bright yellow canola crops and pine forested mountains had us arriving at the Kum Hotel in time for lunch.  It was the first taste of the fabulous food and hospitality of this hotel, which is only 10 minutes drive from the Anzac area.  Our rooms are small, but comfortable, and once we had mastered the mysteries of plumbing,…

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  • Thoughts from our two days in Istanbul

    Thursday 23 April 2009 by Andrew Gray.

    Simpson students and teachers in front of the Blue Mosque Heading down to Gallipoli we had a chance to reflect on our introduction to Turkey from our two days in Istanbul.  The hotel in Taxim Square was a great location - busy, chaotic and full of life.  It's a very cosmopolitan part of the city with thousands of people moving through the square and down Istiklal Street. In this area are plenty of familiar brand-name …

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