The Niches

The Niches of Remembrance represent each of the principal theatres of war in which Australians served during the Great War. The niches are set into the walls of the Hall of Memory. Each is 8 m high by 3.7 m wide. There is a niche for the Gallipoli campaign, the war on the Western Front, the Sinai-Palestine campaign and the fourth lists the principal battles fought by the Royal Australian Navy. The inlaid pattern of the marble of the floor of each niche is a stylised rising sun or general service badge worn by the Australian Imperial Force in the centre of which is set a stone bought from each of these theatres of operation including Gallipoli, Flanders, Palestine and New Guinea.

The Gallipoli niche lists the following battles: the battle of the landing from  25 April to 2 May 1915; Krithia  fought at Cape Helles on 8 May; Lone Pine  fought from 6 to 9 August; Sari Bair; Hill 60 21 to 27 August; and the evacuation on the 19th and 20th of December

The Western front niche beneath the heading France and Belgium includes: the Somme 1916, the campaign fought between July and November; Bullecourt, two battles in April and May 1917; Messines, the great Australian victory in June 1917; Ypres, the battles of the salient from July to November 1917; Somme 1918, from the defence of Villers-Bretonneux to the Amiens offensive; and the Hindenburg Line, breached by the AIF in September 1918.

The New Guinea and the high seas niche includes Call Cocos islands west Atlantic North Sea Otranto barrage and Malaysia.

The Sinai Palestine niche includes Ramani Magdahaba Gaza – Beersheba Megiddo and Damascus

 

On this day
23 February

1942 — Australian troops fought valiantly after the Japanese invasion of Timor but were overwhelmed and the main force of  Australians surrendered. Those who remained continued to wage a guerrilla war for the next year

1956 — 1 Squadron RAAF bombed communist camps near Kuala Lumpur during the Malayan Emergency

1967 — MAJ P. BADCOE led an attack against Viet Cong forces in Vietnam. It was the first of three acts of bravery for which he was posthumously awarded a Victoria Cross. He was also awarded a US Silver Star and a South Vietnam Cross of Gallantry

2000 — International Force for East Timor (INTERFET), commanded by LT GEN Cosgrove, officially handed military command of East Timor to the UNTAET