Buttress sculptures

Rayner Hoff's sixteen seated figures, which represent the various units of the AIF, are positioned at the top of the Memorial building's buttresses. These statues hold the equipment and weaponry relevant to their roles and demonstrate the skills and expertise demonstrated by Australians during the Great War. The figures make the building's purpose very clear.

They were made in Hoff’s studio. He would model a clay figure to a third or half life-size and then it would be enlarged, exactly to scale, by his assistants with the aid of a pointing machine. A plaster cast was then made in segments under John Moorfield’s supervision and the clay removed from the inside. Thomas Grounds and Sons, a Newtown-based family business, then cast the figures in synthetic stone using a white cement, very fine- grained sand and a pinch of red oxide (to match the pink granite cladding of the building).

On this day

On this day
22 October

1916 — HMAS UNA (ex German sloop KOMET) arrived at Malekula Island, New Hebrides, to mount a punitive action against rebellious natives. 40% of UNA’s crew were struck down with malaria

1942 — Battle of GOODENOUGH ISLAND, New Guinea.  This island was occupied by the Sasebo 5th SNLF (Japanese) and securing it was part of the build-up for a major offensive at BUNA

1950 — Battle of YONGJU / The Apple Orchard. This was the first action that Australian troops saw in Korea when they were called to support American troops. Capt Denness won a Military Cross, Lt Butler won a Silver Star and 7 Australians were wounded in the action