100th anniversary of the battle of Beersheba
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the battle of Beersheba, which took place on 31 October 1917. The final phase of the battle was the famous mounted charge of the 4th Light Horse Brigade. The attack on the strategically important town of Beersheba had been launched at dawn, but by late afternoon British forces had made little headway. At dusk, the Australian horsemen of the 4th Light Horse Brigade charged, using their bayonets as swords, breaking through the Turkish defences and seizing the town. The capture of Beersheba enabled British forces to break the Ottoman line near Gaza and advance into Palestine. The Turkish defenders suffered many casualties, and between 700 and 1,000 were captured. Thirty-one light horsemen were killed in the charge and 36 were wounded. At least 70 horses died.
Events and exhibitions
- Last Post Ceremony: 100th anniversary of the battle of Beersheba
The Last Post Ceremony on 31 October will commemorate Sergeant Colin Brodie Bull and his service in the First World War.
- Commemorating the battle of Beersheba
A series of sculptures in recognition of the role played by horses in the First World War is on display in the Captain Reg Saunders Gallery.
- The charge of the 4th Light Horse Brigade at Beersheba by Robyn Van Dyk
- Edward Cleaver died from wounds at the charge of Beersheba 31 October 1917 by Robyn Van Dyk
- The last goodbye by Claire Hunter
- 4th Australian Light Horse Brigade war diary, October 1917 (AWM4, 10/4/10)
- 12th Australian Light Horse Regiment war diary, October 1917 (AWM4, 10/17/9)
- Henry Gullett, The Australian Imperial Force in Sinai and Palestine, 1914–1918 (10th edition, 1941)
- Education resource Back to the source: Beersheba