Ballina shire council will dedicate avenues in and out of Ballina to the Australian war horses that served our troops during World War One.
In a notice of motion dealt with at yesterday’s general council meeting, Cr Meehan explained that the project comes from community members interested in a memorial to ‘The Walers’ – mounts of the Light Horse Regiment serving in the first World War 1914-1918.
The Waler is an Australian breed of riding horses that developed from the horses that were brought to the Australian colonies in the 19th century.
The name comes from their early breeding origins in New South Wales; they were originally known as New South Walers.
For their sheer strength, size and endurance, they were widely considered to the best horses for tough conditions.
In her motion, Cr Meehan outlined the case.
‘The Centenary year of ANZAC would be a most appropriate time to recognise their contribution. 160,000 horses went to war and due to quarantine and army economies, only one returned,’ she wrote.
‘The horses were particularly noted at the campaign for Beersheba against the Turks, where they worked with the 4th and 12th Regiment to win the town and waterwells so desperately required in the desert.
‘These Australian horses became legendary for their qualities of endurance and courage. They are an endangered breed today.
As part of the successful motion, the council will apply to the federal government’s ANZAC Centenary Local Grants Program for funding to support signage and a memorial.
She is hopeful a memorial could be dedicated at the 21016 ANZAC day ceremony.