First World War centenary: Gallipoli fallen remembered at Anzac Day service in Hornchurch
- Credit: Archant
The thousands of men who fell at Gallipoli have been remembered 100 years on.
St Andrew’s Church, in High Street, Hornchurch, held a poignant service yesterday to commemorate the centenary of the First World War battle, which began on April 25 1915.
The disastrous campaign on the Gallipoli peninsula, in Turkey, saw British, Australian and New Zealand forces suffer huge casualties.
The service on Anzac Day, one of Australia and New Zealand’s most important national occasions, reflected the special friendship forged between Hornchurch and New Zealand almost 100 years ago.
In January 1916, the Grey Towers mansion became England’s first depot for the New Zealand contingent and was turned into the New Zealand Convalescent Hospital in July.
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Among the soldiers were 102 Maoris from the island of Niue, in the South Pacific.
Many succumbed to pneumonia and four are buried at the church, including a self-declared prince.
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The Anzac Day service was attended by the mayor, Cllr Linda Trew, councillors and Kenneth Ryan, the First Secretary of the New Zealand High Commission London.
Approximately 200 members of the public also turned out to mark the occasion.
See more in this week’s Recorder.