The State Government will provide $35,000 to the St George’s Cathedral Choir for the pilgrimage of the Villers-Bretonneux Cross to the 90th Anniversary of the Battle of Villers-Bretonneux on Anzac Day this month.
Premier Alan Carpenter made the announcement today, when he met with the Anglican Dean of Perth, the Very Reverend Dr John Shepherd, to inspect the original and replica crosses at St George’s Cathedral.
Mr Carpenter will join Dr Shepherd in France on Anzac Day for the presentation and dedication of the replica cross at the service at Villers-Bretonneux.
“Anzac Day has a powerful and symbolic meaning for all Australians,” the Premier said.
“It will be an especially important Anzac Day service in France this year as we honour the 90th anniversary of the Battle of Villers-Bretonneux.
“Many of the Australians who fought and gave their lives in this battle were Western Australians of the 51st Battalion and history tells us that this battle was instrumental in turning the tide of the Great War and liberating the French.”
Dr Shepherd said the original cross was made as a tribute to those members of the 51st Battalion who fell in that battle and the replica cross was made out of Donnybrook stone in WA as a gift to the people of Villers-Bretonneux.
“The Villers-Bretonneux Cross, representing the lives of Western Australians who died there 90 years ago, will be the focus of the dawn service and a proud monument to our State,” Dr Shepherd said.
“We are pleased to be able to bring the Cross to Villers-Bretonneux as a significant contribution to the commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the battle.”
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