Northern Midlands unites to commemorate Anzac Day

A co-ordinated effort to create a tangible sense of Northern Midlands community spirit around Anzac Day has been a major priority of the Longford RSL sub-branch.

Twelve services in eight different towns will be conducted throughout the municipality, with thousands expected to attend the range of services.

The biggest service of the bunch is expected to be the Longford dawn service, with up to 1000 people expected to attend. 

Longford will also host a service at 11am.

Longford RSL sub-branch secretary Brian Harper has been responsible for overseeing all of the events around the municipality to create a synchronised Anzac Day experience. 

“Our services are based on creating community spirit around the municipality,” he said.

"There will be cadets at each of the services and they’ve been heavily involved with us. 

“The RSL is not getting any younger and we have to get the younger generations involved and to emphasise the Anzac spirit.”

The 6am and 11am services at Ross may not be on the same scale as Longford, but they are still significant for their display of respect to war veterans, according to Ross RSL sub-branch secretary Ray Goss.

About six World War II veterans will be in attendance at the ceremony, along with a number of Vietnam veterans. 

Mr Goss said the day had a special meaning to him.

“My father served in World War II so it has an awful lot of meaning for me,” he said.

“Knowing what they had to go through makes it an important today –  the old war front is not the greatest place to be.” 

Northern Midlands mayor David Downie said he would attend the services at Campbell Town, Perth and Longford. 

“The day’s about where we come from and it symbolises what it is to be Australian and it definitely helps in defining what it means to be an Australian," Cr Downie said.

In 2017, inclement weather forced the Longford service to be performed inside. 

Mr Harper said it would never happen again on his watch.

“I don’t care if it is pouring down with rain, we will be outside,” he said.

MUNICIPALITY ANZAC DAY SERVICES: 

All services will be performed on Wednesday at the respective town cenotaph.

Campbell Town – 6am and 11am

Evandale – 6am and 11am 

Longford – 6am and 11am 

Ross – 6am and 11am 

Cressy – 9am 

Perth – 9am 

Bishopsbourne – 9am 

Avoca – 11am