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Footsteps of honour tour begins in Canberra

​Footsteps of honour 2012 Tour

​The students involved in this year’s Mackay North SHS Footsteps of Honour Tour recently spent four days in Canberra in preparation for their three week overseas commemorative tour in September / October.

The overseas tour will visit Singapore, the Thai Burma Railway, Gallipoli and the battlefields and memorials of France and Belgium. Whilst overseas, the students will commemorate over 100 fallen soldiers on behalf of relatives in Australia.

The Canberra ‘mini’ tour was designed to provide the students with in-depth historical background to the overseas tour – with two full days set aside to visit the Australian War Memorial. As well, the tour was designed so that the students could get to know each other better in preparation for their three weeks overseas together. Visits were also undertaken to Government House, Old Parliament House, the National Archives of Australia and the Australian Parliament.

Another important task was for the students to find and photograph the names of the soldiers they will honour overseas on the War Memorial’s Roll of Honour. As well, the group conducted a commemorative service at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the Hall of Memory. In October, the students will visit the grave of the Unknown Soldier in France.
Another highlight for the group was a visit to the reconstructed Changi Chapel in the grounds of Duntroon College. There will be a further overseas link with this visit when the students spend time at the replica Changi Chapel in Singapore.

All the students agreed that the Canberra tour was very worthwhile and the staff at the War Memorial were very impressed with the students’ behaviour, attitude and their keen interest in what the memorial has on display.