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The Balranald and District Military Heritage Trail

The Balranald and District Military Heritage Trail

The theme of the Balranald and District Military Heritage Trail is Courage, Initiative, Resilience and Compassion. It consists of stories of the experiences of individuals from the district during periods of conflict and how those who returned contributed to the community. Stories include those of a WWI nurse, a chaplain who rode with the 4th Light Horse, a WWI Italian soldier in the Alps, and survivors of the charge at the Nek and legendary night-raid to liberate Villers-Bretonneux. There are also stories of WWII pilots, POWs, service women, intelligence officers, and a member of the Volunteer Defence Corps.

The walk extends over one kilometre, from the We Street – Market Street corner, approximately 50 metres west of the Balranald District Ex-Servicemen’s Memorial Club, along Market Street/ Sturt Highway, right into River Street and along the bank of the Murrumbidgee River (Court Street) to the War Memorial Park. The individual story-signs are spaced around30 metres apart in order to focus on each individual’s story and to provide enough ‘space’ between stories to provoke thought, reflection or discussion. The completed trail will have around 40 story-signs.

The individual story-signs are complemented by large panels that provide context for the places and events mentioned. The themes of the contextual panels include World War I, World War II, In their own words (quotations from local service personnel at the Front), Regional Conflicts and The Home Front. Within the contextual signs are mini stories such as ‘Women at War’, Aboriginal soldiers, POWs, ‘Fallen airmen’ and children’s contributions. The WWI panel lists the names and casualty status of more than 350 volunteers from the district that was published in the local newspaper in 1919. The trail acknowledges the critical support to the war effort by the women, children and others who remained in the district.

Balranald Military Trail

 

Background note

The project is an initiative of Balranald Inc., a not-for-profit community organisation. It was conceived by local landholder Adrian Gorman, developed by David Eastburn and is managed by Marianne O’Halloran pro bono. It has been supported by grants from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and district residents. The signs have been installed free of charge by Balranald Shire Council. All story-signs have been funded by current district residents and former residents from throughout Australia and beyond because public funding cannot be sourced to honour individuals.

Balranald Military Trail

Supported by

Balranald Inc: Not-For-Profit Community based organisation

Balranald Shire Council

Adrian Gorman: District Landholder & Deputy Chairman of Balranald Inc & Chairman
of the District Military Heritage Trail Project Committee

Dr David Eastburn: Human & Historical Geographer

Balranald District Ex-Servicemen’s Memorial Club

Euston Club Resort


 



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