This was the first memorial to be erected on ANZAC Parade in 1968 – unveiled by Prime minister, John Gorton. Perhaps consequentially it lacks the symbolism of later additions to the Parade and is very much in the traditional mode of a piece of sculpture on a plinth.
The memorial, more commonly known as the Light Horse Memorial, commemorates members of the Australian Light Horse, the New Zealand Mounted Rifles, the Imperial Camel Corps and the Australian Flying Corps who died in Egypt, Palestine and Syria from 1916 to 1918. It replaces an original 1932 Australian sculpture in Port Said destroyed by Egyptian nationalists during the 1956 Suez crisis. Disagreement in Australia as to where the replacement memorial was to be located lead to two replacements – the other one being in Albany, Western Australia.
The horse’s head, recovered from the Port Said memorial, forms the centerpiece of the Animals in War memorial located in the War Memorial’s Sculpture Garden. Do have a look at this memorial there – it is a favourite of mine.
The sculpture, on a granite base, depicts, in bronze, a mounted Australian Light Horseman defending a New Zealander who is standing beside his wounded horse. Simple, but a touching display of the comradeship amongst ANZAC troops.
Address: ANZAC Parade