Century of Warra's pride

PRIDE AND HONOUR: Warra Memorial Hall president Jeff Taylor looks over the town's 100-year-old war honour board.
PRIDE AND HONOUR: Warra Memorial Hall president Jeff Taylor looks over the town's 100-year-old war honour board. Julia Baker

ON a sunny but windy day in 1917, more than 200 people assembled in front of the Warra Post Office for the official unveiling of an honour board, a lasting memorial for the local young men and women who had left the district to serve in the First World War.

The honour board was one of the first of its kind in the country to be erected during the war and remains a source of pride for the community 100 years on.

Since being moved in 1957 it has stood proudly in front of Warra Memorial Hall, which was built to remember local men and women who served in the Second World War.

"Most honour boards were erected after the war, it's significant because the names were added on as people died in action,” Warra Memorial Hall president Jeff Taylor said.

"They never knew when the war was going to end, so they had 1914 and then in the copper they had 191- and then they put the last number in...if the war had gone into the 1920s it would have been all wrong,” Mr Taylor said.

"They just put the nine on the end when the war ended.”

This year the committee will celebrate the history of the honour board and remember 20 local men who died in action, with a roll call at the hall's Anzac Day service.

Mr Taylor said the committee was working to source information on each of the men, including where they enlisted, served and died, to help honour them.

Mr Taylor, a hall committee member for more than 30 years, said it was his job to preserve the board and ensure the men who served were not forgotten.

"I can remember when I was a child just after the Second World War, Anzac Day was a day that was very solemn. It was fresh in the minds of our parents and it was very raw,” he said.

"A lot of young people are attending our Anzac Day services and as long it's kept fresh in their mind, the sacrifices these people made, I think it will go on and always be observed by the younger generations for another 100 years.”

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