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Geraldton City RSL

1 day 9 hours ago

Lest We Forget

The grim reality of the First World War has been brought to life in a series of vivid colour pictures.

Batavia Coast Maritime Heritage Association

Geraldton City RSL

5 days 7 hours ago

Geraldton City RSL shared Batavia Coast Maritime Heritage Association's post.

With the Point Moore Lighthouse painted afresh over the last couple of weeks, it is timely to look back on a painting done by 17-year old Dudley Marwood Elliot in 1913, the structure iconic even then.
Timely, because 100 years ago today, 18 September 1918, after surviving WW1 from the shores of Gallipoli until just 3 weeks before war's end, he was killed in battle in France. Pre-war Dudley was in Geraldton learning to be a draftsman from his architect uncle Harry Marwood. Leila Plant now owns his lighthouse painting and others of his wartime works are in the Australian War Memorial along with other records of his service, including this letter to his mother:
My dear Mrs Elliott,
It is with deep sorrow that I have to write to you to convey to you my own, the sympathy of the Commanding Officer, Officers and mess of the 11th Battalion with …..in the death of your dear son Lieutenant Dudley Elliott.
He was in the big battle today when he was severely wounded in the right thigh. He was quickly attended to and was quite bright, but the shock was too great and he gradually sank and passed peacefully away soon after reaching the first field hospital. He was a fine young fellow, a brave and courageous soldier & a good companion. He was much loved in the mess & many are the expressions of sorrow today at his loss.
He had only recently completed a most artistic design for our Xmas card which is now being produced in London. As an artist he was superb. He was set aside a few days ago to attend a military school in some special subjects & was not to have taken part in this big battle.
But owing to shortage of officers he was recalled & he came bright and smiling not minding- for he was a good soldier & never flinched when duty called. And leading his men bravely in now, what has proved to be, one of our greatest successes he fell in the field of honour and gave for us & our great cause his very all- his bright young life.
In the bitter sorrow of a living mother’s heart surely such a life and such a death might be some consolation. He truly has not lived nor died in vain. We laid him to rest in the little cemetery at Tincourtt- not far from Peronne. His brother officers carried him to his last resting place. Chaplain McBain read the sermon over his grave.
I am sure that God will give him the Martyr’s Crown and I trust that He in his fondness will console your heart in your great sorrow.
A nice cross will at once be erected on his grave & then we must leave him resting until the Bugle again calls him to Victory’s Last March.
I am, my dear Mrs Elliott
Sincerely yours
T. J. O’ Donnell
R.C. Chaplain 3rd Brigade

R.I.P. Dudley

Geraldton City RSL

1 week 22 hours ago

City of Geraldton RSL is preparing for our major annual fundraising effort in this Centenary of Armistice Day, when the guns finally fell silent at the end of the First World War. Prior to poppy day we place collection tins and poppies with supportive local businesses, schools and organisations so that people are able to make donations and collect their poppies. We then have a hands-on collection day on 9th November in high traffic areas around Geraldton.

Many of the tins we have been using for years have become rusted and worn and we are asking for members who have suitable tins to donate them to the RSL so that we can paint and label them for this year’s collections. The sort we seek are larger 500g coffee tins, Milo tins and such, even the smaller paint tins around the two litre size.

If you are able to help out please contact Alan Eggleston 0418 918 252 or leave the tins at Birdwood House next time you are there. Thank you for your support.

Birdwood House 2015A number of wounded soldiers who returned to Geraldton after the Dardanelles Campaign (Gallipoli) gathered in Geraldton on 25 April 1917 to form a branch of the Returned Soldiers Association. The next year they organised Geraldton’s first ANZAC Day service.

Between 1917 and 1935 the RSL headquarters was in Marine Terrace. Originally known as the Soldiers’ Institute, then the Esplanade Hotel and the Ocean View Guest House. This building was later demolished but planning had already begun to make available land in Chapman Road.

Funds from local business and citizens enabled the Birdwood House to be built, with the Memorial Obelisk unveiled by then Lt. Governor Sir James Mitchell, GCMG, on 1 September 1935. Two years later, Field Marshall Sir William Birdwood, who commanded the ANZAC Corps at Gallipoli and after whom the building was named, visited and was presented with a gold key and Freedom of Birdwood House.

Field Marshall Sir William Birdwood with R.S.L. Committee, Birdwood House Geraldton, August 27th 1937.

Today, the building is headquarters of the Geraldton RSL and is used by several community groups for meetings and social activities.

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Have a look at the Birdwood Bugle for the latest news and information.


Phone: 9964 1520. Fax: 9964 1522. Email
Postal: PO Box 1243 Geraldton 6530.
Address: 46 Chapman Road, Geraldton.