One hundred and nine white crosses are at the heart of commemorating the centenary of the armistice that ended the First World War in 1918. The ceremonial installation at the Tauranga waterfront will take place on purposefully selected days representing the days when the soldiers from Tauranga died in the First World War. Cadets from the Western Bay of Plenty Cadet Unit will bring the crosses out at dawn between 17 October and 8 November 2018 and everyone is invited to join them and commemorate our fallen.
11 November this year marks the centenary of the armistice, when war finally gave way to peace after four years of brutal conflict.
Mayor Greg Brownless said that every year on 11 November, New Zealanders across the country remember the service and sacrifices endured by those who fought, and those who stayed behind.
“The First World War had an impact on almost every family at that time. It is important that we remember this significant day in our history,” Mr Brownless said.
“This year we will celebrate peace and recapture the jubilation and hopefulness that would have swept many parts of the world at that time.
“I invite our community to come together and commemorate this significant date in our city’s history at the events taking place.”
Events to commemorate Armistice Day in Tauranga
Installation: Field of Remembrance – Honouring our Fallen
17 October – 8 November at the Tauranga waterfront and from 10 November at Memorial Park
One hundred and nine white crosses will be installed at dawn in the lead-up to Armistice Day. The months that the First World War lasted have been carefully translated into a period of 28 days to represent the time when the soldiers from Tauranga died. Cadets from the Western Bay of Plenty Cadet Unit, along with the assistance of other units in the area will bring the crosses out at dawn between 17 October and 8 November 2018. The crosses will carry the names of the men from Tauranga who did not return from war. After all the crosses are installed, they will be re-located to Memorial Park, the location for the city’s official Armistice Day commemoration service.
Exhibition: Homecomings: From Tauranga to the Trenches
12 October – 8 November, 9.30am to 3.30pm (weather dependent) at the Tauranga waterfront and from 10 November at Memorial Park
The First World War ended at 11am on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, 1918. War-weary soldiers celebrated little. Most simply wanted to go home. The stories of our soldiers who made it back to Aotearoa will be told in a unique exhibition, accompanying the installation of the crosses. Homecomings, the final From Tauranga to the Trenches exhibition, explores the experiences of local soldiers returning home.
The community is welcome to join in the commemorations at dawn between 17 October and 8 November to witness the cross installation and explore history at the exhibition from 12 October at the Tauranga waterfront.
Armistice Centenary Service
11 November, 11am at Memorial Park
Tauranga’s commemoration will culminate in the Armistice Day Centenary Service at 11am on 11 November at Tauranga’s Memorial Park, with two minutes silence, large-scale poppies designed by local artists, and the 109 white crosses united for our people to honour the fallen.
Stay up to date at www.tauranga.govt.nz/armisticeday