Tuesday, 12 January 2016

The Spirit of Anzac comes to the Gong

The Spirit of ANZAC Centenary experience Australian War Memorial's travelling exhibition is in my city of Wollongong - the 'Gong - this month, indeed its hosted by my university! So I had long booked tickets for myself and the long haired Brigadier to go and see it - a 10 minute drive away and today was the day...

Carried on over 100 large trucks, the exhibition has taken over the entire university gym - a much better use of this resource in my view!

The exhibition contains much that you might expect - mannequins in uniform, surrounded by props, of all the branches of service and of the gallant foe...

Lots of beautifully executed scale models of the larger artefacts of war...

And some 1:1 scale hardware, some were real, captured or liberated from the battlefield,

and some were carefully executed replicas, like this tank:

Inevitably, perhaps in this centenary year, the emphasis was on the First World War, and to a certain extent upon the Gallipoli campaign, but the Western Front and Palestine and Sinai received ample coverage too, as did matters naval and aerial.

The exhibition was honest and confronting in its approach to the horrors of war, with some disturbing images of horrific wounds and scars some of the Anzacs came home with, and with reference to those wounds that don't show scars...

I was particularly impressed with the technique and care that had been taken with the various periscope and binocular views that dotted the exhibition...I found a rare detail of a Vickers machine gun being fired in a high angle, indirect fire role in this trench view, the detail below:


WW2 and subsequent ANZAC engagement across the world was covered more through the use of audio and visual aids, although the entire tour was accompanied by a well crafted audio guide.

No, despite the outcome of the 2015 Rugby World Cup, Australian forces have not been committed in a combat role across the Tasman Sea - this canine served in the aftermath of the Christchurch earthquakes...

So, anyway, if the Spirit of Anzac exhibition comes anywhere near your part of this earthly paradise we call Australia, please go and see it - highly recommended!


  1. We must confess that we are most impressed by your attempts to improve yourself by such educational visits. Well done and many thank yous for allowing us to visit albeit in a remote and slightly diminished capacity! 8O)

    von Peter himself