Gisborne First World War memorial

Gisborne First World War memorial.

The Gisborne and Districts First World War memorial was unveiled by Colonel C.W. Melville on Anzac Day 1923. It was situated alongside the Kaiti Esplanade, near the confluence of the Turanganui, Waimata and Turanganui Rivers. Designed by a local architect Edward Armstrong, himself a returned soldier, the marble memorial column stood on a wide pedestal above a set of low steps flanked by carvings of recumbent lions. It was topped by a statue of a soldier standing with arms reversed. Bronze tablets were set into each of the four central panels of the pedestal. These together listed the names of 575 men from Poverty Bay who had fallen during the war.

A further four tablets were added after the Second World War, listing another 474 names.

The four First World War panels, which are headed ‘To Our Gallant Dead / Lest We Forget / Great War 1914 – 1919’,  list the following names respectively: Adair to Farquahar, Faulkner to Langridge, Levinge to Ruha, and Rukingi to Yeats. The four Second World War panels, which are more simply headed ‘Roll of Honour /  1939 – 1945’  list the following names respectively: Adair to Haronga, Harrison to Ngatoro, Oakey to Tupara, and Tureia to Young. The last tablet also lists the names of five men who fell in Malaya, two in Korea and two in Vietnam.

The structure was damaged by an earthquake on 20 December 2007 but has since been restored.  

SiteStyleOrnamentationUnveiling Date No of Dead
Garden/parkSoldier at
ease
Cross, lion25-April-1923575

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