ANZAC Day 2018


ANZAC Day Dawn Service Map – coming soon


The aim of the Sydney ANZAC Day March is to give the participating veterans and the general public an opportunity to honour those who served in the defence of Australia or its interests, especially remembering those who paid the supreme sacrifice or otherwise suffered as a result of their service.

The March is not a parade and no vehicle, animal, weaponry, memorabilia (including historic uniforms), or photographs may be included without the prior written permission of the March Committee.

ANZAC Day March Updates to be provided

ANZAC Day March Broadsheet – coming soon

Estimated Timings 2018 – coming soon


The start point for the March is the intersection of Elizabeth Street and Martin Place. The start time is 9.00am. The participants are to pass the start line in the order shown in the Order of March sheet. The order of the March must not be changed without the approval of the Chief Marshal.


The Order of March will be: WWII Navy/WWII Army/ WWII Air Force-Navy/ Army/Air Force-Civilians in support of Australian Troops-Descendants of Australian Veterans-Commonwealth Troops-Allies.

The Order of March cannot be changed without the approval of the March Committee.


Navy Order of March – coming soon


RAAF Order of March (RAAF WWII Contingent Banners) – coming soon

RAAF Order of March (RAAF ANZAC Day 2018 Post WWII) – coming soon


Due to the construction work in George Street for the light rail project, the March will commence at the intersection of Martin Place and Elizabeth Street, travel south on Elizabeth Street to Liverpool Street, where Marchers will wheel left for dispersal.

ANZAC Day Sydney March Map – coming soon


The Act of Remembrance will be observed as units pass the ANZAC Memorial in Elizabeth Street. A marshal will be positioned in the correct area in order to assist unit leaders with giving the eyes left command. At this command, hats are to be removed and the right hand held over the left breast and kept in that position until the unit is clear of the Memorial, when the reverse is to be followed. Heads are to be turned towards the Memorial when passing it. Banners and Flags are to be dipped. Defence Force formations are to salute the Memorial as they pass it.


Units who wish to conduct a brief wreath-laying service at the Cenotaph on 24-25 April should contact ANZAC House to be allocated an appropriate time in the schedule of events. The last wreath-laying ceremony at the Cenotaph prior to the Consular Wreath Laying Service and the start of the March on ANZAC Day is at 8.15am. Wreaths may also be laid at the conclusion of the March.


The ANZAC Commemoration Service is held at the ANZAC Memorial, Hyde Park, adjacent to the Pool of Remembrance, commencing at 12.30pm.

The service has developed into an impressive dedication to ANZAC, usually attended by His Excellency the Governor, Premier of New South Wales, Leader of the Opposition, senior service representatives, invited guests and members of the community. In recent years a United Drumhead Service has been introduced. This year support is to be provided by cadets from The Scots College and a choir accompanied by the NSW Police Concert Band.


NSW Police Concert Band and the Scots College Massed Pipe Band traditionally provide music for the Commemoration Service and take a post in the band bay and pool surrounds as directed.


This ceremony will start at the Cenotaph, Martin Place, at 5.00pm. It will be a short service accompanied by the NSW Ambulance Service Band and followed by the lowering of the flags. It brings to a conclusion the official ANZAC Day Commemorations in Sydney.


If you require a wheelchair and would like to hire one on Anzac Day, please click here for a list of appropriate wheelchair providers.


For more information contact:

Arline Ronsisvalle

For further information please visit


For more information contact:

Bradley Sharpe

0439 345 902


Anyone eligible to be a Service Member of The Returned and Services League of Australia is eligible to participate in the March.

A descendant of a veteran is invited to march with a Unit formation as a carer (one per marching veteran), banner party or flag carrier, regardless of whether they are entitled to be a member of The Returned and Services League of Australia or not.

All other descendants are invited to march with the descendants’ associations in a place of prominence in front of the Commonwealth and Allies contingent. One descendant of a deceased veteran may honour their relative’s service by wearing his/her medals on their right breast.

Units that do not contain any marching veterans will be directed to march with the descendants association.


As the ANZAC Day March is an Act of Remembrance and Commemoration, dress should reflect the dignity of the occasion and children should be of discretionary years.


Medal Shop – Website: or Ph: (02) 9583 1666

Glendinnings Menswear Website:  or Ph: (02) 9358 4097


2018 marks 102 years since the first commemoration of ANZAC in Sydney. We owe it to those who have gone before, those who are yet to come as well as those who currently carry the flame to ensure the day is as dignified and respectful as possible by abiding by the agreed guidelines and directions of volunteer marshals at each of these important services and events.

Raymond William Ernest Holmes, NX33348.

Lesley Hewitt to 2/3 PIONEER BATTALION

I would be grateful if anyone could tell me anything about my uncle, Raymond William Ernest Holmes, NX33348. He passed away in 2004. It is my belief that he served in the Pioneers from its inception until he was medically evacuated from Tarakan at the end of the war. I am particularly interested in photos. Thank you in anticipation of a reply.

Memories of War – Tarkan 1945 – taken from the Memoirs of Pte. C.L. Ireland, A.I.F. (my grandfather)


We are honoured to have this post from SAMANTHA IRELAND
Samantha Ireland‎ 2/3 PIONEER BATTALION

I thought some of you might be interested in reading an excerpt from my grandfather’s memoirs on Tarakan and after:

Memories of War – Tarkan 1945 – taken from the Memoirs of Pte. C.L. Ireland, A.I.F.

(my grandfather)

“The day of the attack was wet and the ridge we had to go up was very steep and slippery. After the usual pounding by our artillery and mortars, some of which came very close to hitting us, we moved out but it was a hell of a struggle just to climb the hill, let alone cop what the Japs were throwing at us. Blokes were getting killed and wounded all around me. I’m not the brave type – I was terrified – but it was sheer stubborness that stopped me from sliding down that hill. After several…

View original post 869 more words

The Landings – Borneo

Three distinct operations were conducted. The first was on the island of Tarakan off north-east Borneo. It was to be captured and airfields established there. The operation was code-named OBOE 1. The 26th Infantry Brigade (part of the 9th Division) was allocated the task of taking the island. Its troops practised amphibious operations ahead of the actual landing from American landing ships and landing craft on 1 May 1945. Engineers went in first and cleared gaps through the beach defences with explosives before the main assault. Naval and air bombardments also destroyed or damaged many enemy positions. Over the next seven weeks, there was fierce fighting as the Australians pushed inland to take the whole island. More than 200 Australians were killed before the last Japanese positions fell on 20 June 1945. The dead included one of the most famous Australian soldiers of the war, Lieutenant Tom ‘Diver’ Derrick VC DCM, 2/48th Battalion, and also the sole recipient of the Victoria Cross for actions on Tarakan Island, Corporal John Mackey, 2/3rd Pioneer Battalion.

via The Landings – Borneo.

via The Landings – Borneo.


Mud and Sand – 2/3 Pioneer Bn at War (2nd Edition)


Title: Mud and Sand – 2/3 Pioneer Bn at War

Author: Anderson, J A, and Jackett, J G T

Condition: Very Good

Edition: 1st Edition

Publication Date: 2003


Cover: Soft Cover (Spiral Bound) – 208 pages

Comments: The history of the 2/3rd Australian Pioneer Battalion during World War II.

Revised edition of the 8 part Mud and Blood publications of the2nd/3rd Australian Pioneer Battalion.  This is a bound facsimile cheaply (ie low quality) produced by the Association. Now scarce in any edition and pretty much the only printed history of the battalion currently available.

Note: The photo images in this book did not reproduce well from the individual volumes of this particular unit history.

The 2/3rd Pioneer Battalion was raised in May 1940 at Glenfield, near Liverpool, with men mainly from the Sydney area. The battalion did its initial training at Glenfield, before moving to Cowra in September for further training. In March 1941 the 2/3rd moved to Darwin, where it became attached to elements of the 7th Division. In September the pioneers returned to Sydney and in November left Sydney as part of a convey going to the Middle East. The 2/3rd sailed on the Queen Mary, the same ship that brought them home 14 months later.

The battalion arrived in Egypt in the third week of November and travelled by train through Palestine, spending Christmas in Qastina. In January 1942 units from the 7th Division began returning to Australia. However, the 2/3rd moved to Syria and became attached to the 9th Division. The 2/3rd fought alongside the 9th Division for the rest of the war.

By July 1942 the battle in North Africa became critical for the British Eighth Army, with German and Italian forces reaching El Alamein in Egypt, about seventy miles from Alexandria. The 9th Division was rushed from Syria to the Alamein area and held the northern sector for almost four months as the Eighth Army reinforced for an offensive under new a commander.

The 2/3rd moved to Bir Abu Shinena, part of the “Alamein box”, at the start of August and became attached to the 24th Brigade. The pioneers replaced the 2/28th Infantry Battalion, which had suffered heavy casualties, and went into reserve. They helped defend the area and improve the defences before the Allied counter-attack in October.

The battalion played a prominent role in the heavy fighting around areas known as the “Saucer” and the “Blockhouse”. The operation was carried out at the end of October by two battalions from the 26th Brigade, a battalion from the 24th Brigade, three companies from the 2/3rd Pioneer Battalion, and a number of British tanks. The 2/3rd was directed to attack 3,000 yards directly north from the Saucer and take up a blocking position in the dunes near the coast. In the early hours of 30 October the pioneers had travelled only halfway when they were blocked by supporting artillery bombardment. Forced to leave their heavy weapons and ammunition behind in trucks, the pioneers continued on. At the break of dawn, however, they found themselves in another saucer, subject to enemy fire from three sides. But they had achieved their goal and virtually sealed-off the enemy in the coastal salient.

For the next two days the Australians defended their exposed positions. Many of their front positions were either captured or ground down by repeated German attacks. In the main Saucer, however, the Germans had less success, even though the eastern part of the Australian defence was pushed back south of the railway line. Fighting continued for the next couple of days and German forces were worn down. By 5 November Axis forces were falling back.

Between August and November the battalion suffered 28 men killed and 46 captured. Alamein was a vital, although bloody, success for the Allies and one of the war’s turning points. The 9th Division, however, was recalled to Australia to face a new enemy – the Japanese. The 2/3rd returned to Australia in early 1943.

After leave, the battalion underwent jungle training on the Atherton Tablelands in Queensland but would soon return to action. As part of the move to capture the Japanese base at Lae the 9th Division landed at Red Beach, north-west of the area, in September. Following Lae’s capture, the Australians made another landing at Scarlet Beach, near Finschhafen. The 2/3rd rejoined the division and in October participated in the successful defence of Scarlet Beach when the Japanese counter-attacked. When the fighting was over, the pioneer’s reverted to their engineering role, working on the Satelburg Road and other locations on New Guinea’s northern coast supporting the Huon Peninsula campaign.

The 2/3rd returned to Australia in March 1944, disembarking in Brisbane. After leave, the battalion reformed at Ravenshoe in May and did not go into action again until the final months of the war.

Devised towards the end of the war, the OBOE operations were designed to reoccupy areas of the Netherlands East Indies with the 9th and 7th Divisions making amphibious landings on Borneo. The 9th Division landed on Tarakan in May and on Labuan Island and Brunei Bay in June. The 7th Division land at Balikpapan in July.

In order to support the landing at Tarakan, Australian troops first landed on Sadau. A detachment from the 2/3rd worked as gun crews on the landing craft that took the men ashore. When the 26th Brigade landed on Tarakan, the pioneers were assigned to the 2nd Beach Group. On 4 May the battalion relieved the 2/23rd Infantry Battalion and began patrolling the Tarakan township and around the Pamoesian oilfield. The next day they began clearing the Japanese from high ground to the east of the town.

On 5 May two companies from the 2/3rd advanced eastward along John’s Track and found two Japanese positions – called the “Helen” and the “Sadie” – on each side. The positions were overcome with persistent attacks from the pioneers supported by heavy artillery, naval concentrations, and napalm air strikes. They were finally occupied on 14 May. At the same time elements of the pioneers reached the coast and captured the Japanese defences. Corporal John Bernard Mackey was posthumously awarded the Victoria Cross for his involvement in the fight for the Helen.

By the end of June the fighting was over on Tarakan and Japan surrendered in August. The 2/3rd gradually thinned, as men were discharged or transferred. In January 1946 the remaining troops returned to Australia and the battalion was disbanded shortly after.


John Patrick Twiss (nickname Doc) was in the 2/3 Pioneer Battalion. Zara Farmer. 



Service Australian Army
Service Number NX27427
Date of Birth 17 Aug 1909
Place of Birth SYDNEY, NSW
Date of Enlistment 19 Jun 1940
Locality on Enlistment GLADESVILLE, NSW
Place of Enlistment PADDINGTON, NSW
Next of Kin TWISS, ROSE (mother)
Date of Discharge 9 Oct 1945
Rank Private
Posting at Discharge 2/3 Pioneer Battalion
WW2 Honours and Gallantry None for display
Prisoner of War No


Seeking relatives or next-of-kin to Thomas Alfred Roberts 2/3 pioneer battalion VX55034 & 148874. Am in possession of service medals,mothers medal, shells from the beach in north Africa, not related would like to return items to family (obtained in misc lot on ebay), any help would be grateful.


Prisoner of War (Prigione di Guerra) Campo 57 Gruppignano, Udine, Fruili, Northern Italy


This site is dedicated to the Prisoners of War (POW) held at Campo 57, gruppignano in Northern Italy during World War Two. Information, photos, mementos or stories, will be gratefully accepted and added to this website in order to increase its value as a resource for families and researches. Visitors and Researchers should feel free to copy any material from this site without fee. I have wherever possible referenced where I obtained my material and as a courtesy I would encourage others using this material to also reference the original owner of the material.


Whilst I am making every attempt to ensure accuracy, I am only too happy to be corrected by those with historical expertise that is almost certainly likely to be vastly superior to mine – though I am learning rapidly. The fastest way to build a repertoire of historical knowledge, mementoes, images and family historical detail, is through the exchange of questions and answers. To my mind the best way to do this is via facebook where any interested person can pose a question or post an image, and any one of us can subsequently respond with an answer. Thus I have attached a link to a facebook site.


Lastly I want to extend to the families of prisoners of war at campo 57 my sincerest assurances that any information you provide or detail you provide regarding your relative will be treated with the utmost respect and posted to this site with the dignity that these men deserve.

via Home.





I have been signed up on the 2/3rd site now for a couple of years and think I posted on one occasion. My father John Carr served with the 2/3rd throughout the war and was a sort of unofficial photographer for the battalion. He died in 1985 and spend a considerable time in his latter years organising his photos. I know he managed to send some sets of prints out to some of his old comrades but I am sure most would not have seen them.

I am keen to meet up with any who are still alive and see if they might recognise some of the faces and places so that I might provide at some stage the War Memorial with an annotated set.


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