Week of events marks centenary of Anzac Day

16 April 2015

On 25 April, it will be 100 years since New Zealand and Australian soldiers landed on the Gallipoli Peninsula. In Wellington, we’re marking this significant day with a week of special events.

Projection of poppies on the facade of the Dominion Museum building from WWI Remembered: A Light and Sound Show.

WWI Remembered: A Light and Sound Show at Pukeahu National War Memorial Park

On 18 April, commemorations begin with the official opening of Pukeahu National War Memorial. The ceremony starts at 11am with a multi-media sequence that takes the audience from the grounds outside into the National War Memorial via several large screens placed throughout the park. The Choir of Wellington Cathedral of St Paul and the Tudor Consort will perform “Memento for an Unknown Warrior”, written by carillonist Timothy Hurd QSM. Wellington musician Louis Baker will also perform his song “Love”.

The ceremony will feature addresses from Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, GNZM QSO Governor-General of New Zealand and Prime Minister Rt Hon John Key.

Following the ceremony, the Governor-General and Prime Minister will open The Great War Exhibition at the Dominion Museum building. Designed by Sir Peter Jackson and WingNut Films, this exhibition tells the story of New Zealand’s role in “the war to end all wars” through personal stories and immersive experiences.

Also opening at Te Papa on the same day, Gallipoli – The Scale of Our War was created in partnership with Weta Workshop, and brings the worlds of movies, model-making and museums together to shed light on the eight-month campaign.

On Saturday evening, Pukeahu National War Memorial will become the backdrop for a dramatic light and sound show. WWI Remembers brings our military history to life with projected images and an evocative soundscape. The 15-minute show will run on a loop from 7pm to 10pm each night, 18 to 25 April.

Commemorations at Pukeahu National War Memorial continue on 20 April, with the dedication of the Australian Memorial at 10am. Prime Minister John Key will join Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to acknowledge the two nations’ special bond.

The Anzac Day Eve Street Parade on 24 April is a highlight of the week-long programme of events. Starting at 12.30pm at Parliament and finishing at Pukeahu National War Memorial, the parade will feature military personnel, vintage war machinery and a special fly-over of vintage WWI aircraft.

That evening, there will be a vigil service at Wellington Cathedral from 6pm. You are welcome to light candles at the Cathedral to commemorate the Anzacs until 9pm.

Anzac Day itself, on 25 April, starts early with a dawn service from 5.30am at Pukeahu National War Memorial. This will be followed the National Anzac Day Service from 11am.

At 9am, the Wellington Citizens Wreath-Laying Service will take place at the Wellington Cenotaph. Another wreath-laying service will happen at 2pm at Atatürk Memorial. From 2.30pm at Pukeahu National War Memorial, you can watch a live broadcast of the dawn service at Gallipoli. This will be followed by the Ceremony of Beat Retreat at 5.15pm.