ANZAC Walk honouring Emerald’s fallen

One of the plaques on the Anzac Walk. Picture: EMERALD RSL.

By Parker McKenzie

Visitors are invited to take the time to listen to the stories of the 32 diggers who lost their lives in First World War on Emerald RSL’s Anzac Walk Audio Trail.

The tour, devised in 2015 before the Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove visited Emerald to open Anzac Place, features eight stops with QR codes where people can listen to stories of life during in the township during the First World War and the sacrifice of the 32 Australian soldiers from Emerald who lost their lives.

Emerald RSL president Peter Maloney said the Audio Tour hasn’t been running for the last two years because of the pandemic.

“When the governor-general came to Emerald to open it, that’s when we set up the walk which goes down the main street of Emerald down to Anzac Place,” he said.

“There are 10 stations and they all have audio about four of the men who died during the First World War.”

Mr Maloney said once you scan the QR code on each station, you can listen to the audio tour on your phone.

“It starts off at station one with a preliminary about life in Emerald at the time,” he said.

“As it progresses through to stage two at Anzac Place, you can hear the story of each of the groups of four men who died in the First World War,

“The experience is quite unique here in Australia, there isn’t many like it.”

Amazingly, no soldier from Emerald lost their life during the Second World War.

Mr Maloney said the audio trail was honouring the memories of the soldiers who lost their lives, but also previous efforts to commemorate veterans from Emerald.

“Heroes Avenue in Emerald was initially established in 1921, near the primary school. It had a whole heap of Blackwood trees which were planted and had plaques around them,” he said.

“In the 1950s the council decided to widen Heroes Avenue so all the plaques were taken off the trees and the RSL salvaged them, we have the plaques in our club room,

“We couldn’t replace Heroes Avenue because of how busy the roads are now, but we decided to replace it with a new Anzac Walk.”