WHILE many Anzac commemorations during this year’s centenary celebrations have focussed on departing troops, Anzac Cottage in Mt Hawthorn is turning that on its head.
During an open day on July 10, Ann Chapple from the Friends of Anzac Cottage will give a talk about the Anzacs’ homecoming.
Ms Chapple will discuss the first two ships to return to WA carrying sick and wounded, the SS Kyarra and SS Ballarat.
“We have commemorated the Anzacs as they left this state from Fremantle, but what of their homecoming?” asks Ms Chapple, granddaughter of the cottage’s original resident, private Cuthbert John Porter.
The historic cottage was built in 1916 as a home for a wounded soldier and his family by locals who wanted to show their appreciation.
Remarkably, it was built in a single day by a small army of volunteers.
Feeling blessed to be the sole beneficiary of the city’s gratitude to Anzacs, Pte Porter raised the Australian flag every dawn for 48 years to commemorate his military colleagues.
Today Anzac Cottage serves as a memorial to those who lost their lives in the Gallipoli landing.
The open day is on July 10 from 1 – 4pm, with Ms Chapple’s talk at 2.30pm. Anzac Cottage is at 38 Kalgoorlie Street, Mt Hawthorn.
by TRILOKESH CHANMUGAM