Atatürk memorial in Wellington

Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial Ataturk memorial

Memorial to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the first president of the Republic of Turkey. It is located on a ridge above Tarakena Bay on the south coast of Wellington.

The memorial looks out over Cook Strait and the site was chosen for its remarkable likeness to the landscape of the Gallipoli peninsula. It was the outcome of an agreement between the Turkish, Australian and New Zealand governments. The Atatürk memorial was our response to the Turkish government building a commemorative site at Anzac Cove (which they renamed from Ari Burnu).

The memorial was designed by Ian Bowman and was unveiled on 26 April 1990 by the Turkish Minister of Agriculture. The memorial comprises a marble crescent, a bust of Atatürk, inscriptions, and soil from Anzac Cove. In 1999, a paved forecourt and path, also designed by Bowman, and gravel car-parking areas were added with funding from the Turkish government.

Wreathlaying services are held at the memorial on Anzac Day (25 April), and during August by the Wellington Company of the Wellington and Hawke's Bay Battalion Group to commemorate the Battle for Chunuk Bair.

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5 comments have been posted about Atatürk memorial in Wellington

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Posted: 27 Mar 2013

Hi Ian. Thanks for letting us know about this cairn. I found this image on Flickr  - - so if we can get permission to use it I can add the cairn to the memorial's register. Regards, Jamie Mackay

Ian Coy

Posted: 27 Mar 2013

Since sending my previous email, I have found this on a search of regimental memorials Auckland.
Ian Coy

Ian Coy

Posted: 27 Mar 2013

Here is a copy of an email I have just sent to the Auckland War Museum. Please consider its contents would be relevant to your web site.
Ian Coy

The Director.
Dear Sir/Madam,
My wife and I visited your wonderful museum again in January. Afterwards we tried to find the war memorial on the playing fields just behind the museum. You may be familiar with the inscription, but I was not when I first stumbled on it in 2008; it moved me to tears. I guess it has the same effect on many people as I read that "Ataturk’s poignant message is inscribed in the Turkish Memorial to the Unknown Soldier in Gallipoli, and inscribed also at the Ataturk Memorials in Canberra, Australia and in Wellington, New Zealand."

Here is the inscription:

“Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives… you are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours… You, the mothers, who sent their sons from faraway countries wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well. — Kemal Ataturk.”

I am writing to you because I can find no reference to this Auckland memorial in the Museum's website and it does not show up in a Google search. The staff at the Museum entrance on the day of our visit did not know of it, nor did Paul in the Armoury when asked over the phone. This omision is a pity, I think it should be more widely known. Is it possible to include mention of its existence in your literature and website? The stone memorial is to be found on the far side of the sport field directly opposite the grandstand in Grandstand Road South, The Domain.

Thank you for your time.
Yours sincerely,
Ian Coy