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NZ horses and carts at Alexandria


New Zealand military transport at the camp in Alexandria, Egypt, 1915. Rows of horses are feeding behind horse-drawn vehicles in the foreground, with buildings and tents in the distance.

Many horses taken to Gallipoli were shipped back to Egypt without landing on the peninsula because of the unsuitability of the conditions. Sapper Alfred S. Ayrey of the Divisional Signal Company wrote to his mother about the return to Egypt:

We arrived at Alexandria in record time, unloaded the wounded, and went straight back to land the horses, but instead we got 600 more wounded and came back to Alexandria again. We had now been on the boat five weeks, and the horses were in poor condition, and not fit for hard work. Accordingly, we were told to take them ashore and go into camp, and we would be sent for when wanted. And so here we are, camped on a nice sandy beach, like New Brighton, with four horses to look after each. We have been here four weeks, and we have been told that we may be here for some time yet with the horses.


Alexander Turnbull Library
Photographer: Laurie Mackie
Reference no: PA1-o-309-04-1
Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Matauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image

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NZ horses and carts at Alexandria, URL:, (Manatū Taonga — Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated