Friday, 11 November 2011

Remembrance Day 11/11/2011

Today I attended The Remembrance Day ceremony at Kings Park and Botanic Gardens:
The weather was glorious, the atmosphere subdued and contemplative, and yet there was a distinct air of mutual respect and contentment. We were all there to honour the fallen of World War One - the "so-called" war to end all wars. We were all joined in our reflection on our lives as it stands today, and how blessed we are to live in such a beautiful city and be a part of the absolute picture-perfect scenery and surroundings of Kings Park. We share in the gratitude of our freedom and we share in the pain of the past.
Apart from the constant squawking of crows and magpies, there was a mass solitude. The band began their practice, as the RSL members milled about, greeting one another and sharing a hearty laugh, finding friends and comrades, holding wreaths, and selling poppies.
The band sounds lovely as they practise their scales, so perfectly timed! A large cloud drifts over the sun, taking away its rather nasty bite. I had to re-apply my sunscreen as well, it certainly is needed today.
The Leake Memorial and The Grand Walk 1910
The Leake Memorial 2011
The crowds are thickening now, as the commencement of service draws nearer. School children, RSL members and their wives, widows, children and grandchildren, politicians and dignitaries, and the media are all out in force. Before the service I walked around to take some photographs, and then found a spot to sit for the proceedings. The sun was biting harder and a few cadets from the Catapult Party are feeling the pressure.

The State War Memorial 1929
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh
visit the State War Memorial in 1954
The State War Memorial 2011
Eerie sounds of the band warming up, puts me in mind of the 'Titanic' soundtrack; the track that plays at the end, after the ship had sunk. It is very moving, very sad, and very eerie.
The service is drawing to a close and the 'National Anthem' is sung. The wreaths have all been laid, the Catapult Party has marched away, the crowd wanders around the Flame of Remembrance to say a quiet prayer, look at the wreaths and take photographs. It was a very poignant, emotional morning. One I shall remember for a very long time.


  1. Beautiful post. Absolutely beautiful photos. I liked how you did a then/now take on each. It sounds like it was a very moving event.

  2. What a fantastic post!I love the historical photographs, are they your own? I am working on the RSL Living History Project (Western Australia) and thought you may be interested to know that the first two decades (1920s & 1930s) of our publication, The Listening Post, is available on our website at I will be sure to share your blog on our Facebook page also :) Thank you.