Hazelwood Rotary Club and ANZAC Day

by Leo Billington

ANZAC Day in Churchill – April 25, 2021

ANZAC Day in Churchill is a special community event co-ordinated by the Rotary Club of Hazelwood in conjunction with the RSL.

This year the 9.00 am ceremony will be preceded by a recreated Gunfire Breakfast at 8.00 am. Catering will be provided by the Hazelwood Rotary Club and the Churchill Lions Club, and following the ANZAC Day ceremony, tea and coffee will be available.

Back in April, 1917, the Morwell Advertiser reported that:

“Anzac Day was celebrated at the local State School on Wednesday, when a lengthy program was gone through including addresses by President of Shire (Councillor Dunbar), Councillors Radburn, Kneebone, Buckley, Reverend Adeney, and Mr Aherin. Mr G. Watson presided.”

Up in the hill country at Jumbuk, there was a “large attendance at the Jumbuck Road State School [number 3867] on Wednesday April 25, 1917.” It was reported that:

WW1 Landing

“The gathering assembled in the school and enjoyed a short program of songs, recitations, and a short address by the head teacher on the Landing at Gallipoli. After the program was concluded the visitors adjourned to the hall, where sumptuous refreshments, kindly provided by the ladies, was partaken of. A collection, amounting to about 25/- was taken up, and run off for by the school children, ladies and gentlemen, who were enthusiastic and out to win.

Many thanks are due to the donors of gifts in food, lollies and peanuts, which were handed round in bags to the children. The gathering dispersed after giving cheers for the King and Empire.”

At an ANZAC Day ceremony in Morwell on May 3, 1918, the Morwell Advertiser proudly reported that, “the reason of the gathering was to commemorate the glorious feats achieved by the Anzac heroes, who landed on Gallipoli that day three years ago.

WW1 Soldiers

The boys had made a name for Australia that would never he forgotten. The lads knew they were going to fight a relentless foe, but they also knew that they were fighting for liberty, justice, and all we hold dear, and for this they were prepared to lay down their lives.”