Sunday, April 27, 2008

Dimboola Memorial High School

Dimboola Memorial High SchoolLast Friday saw the annual observance of Anzac Day around Australia and New Zealand. Anzac Day honours the men and women who died during war and is commemorated on the anniversary of the failed landing of the Australian and New Zealand Corps (ANZAC) on 25 Apr 1915 at Gallipoli, Turkey.

I was in Dimboola, in western Victoria and decided to have a look at the local high school which was erected as a memorial to the soldiers from the town who had lost their lives during World War I.

At the time most towns erected cenotaphs or halls to honour their war dead so Dimboola was quite progressive to build a high school.

The building was designed by W McKay, the Chief Architect of the Public Works Department and work was completed during 1924 although the Soldiers’ Memorial Higher Elementary School wasn’t officially opened until 2 Dec 1924 followed by a public banquet that evening.

WWI Honour Roll, DimboolaA WWI honour board was erected on the front of the main hall and other boards have been added for WWII and other conflicts since. The school was renamed Dimboola Memorial High School in 1947.

I don’t think the building is particularly Art Deco but the fact that it was built shows how the First World War affected all areas of society not just those who lost family members and how something positive can come to a rural Australian town from such a terrible world-wide atrocity.

For a more detailed history of the school see Dimboola Memorial High School website.

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