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March 3, 2024

Gallipoli landing to be re-enacted at Tweed Heads

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A re-enactment of the Gallipoli dawn landing by Anzac troops will break the early morning calm around Jack Evans Boat Harbour at Tweed Heads for 15 minutes tomorrow (Saturday) morning, as the clock turns back 100 years on the beach setting.

A lighting and battle soundtrack will burst to life as 40 surf lifesavers dressed in World War 1 uniforms carrying authentic armoury come ashore in a fleet of boats at the harbour.

The event is expected to bring thousands of people to the boat harbour parklands to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Gallipoli.

Orgainsers say that for those 15 minutes, months of work by hundreds of people will finally be realised as the harbour becomes a giant outdoor stage for the dramatic re-enactment of the dawn landing at Gallipoli.

Timed to start at 5am, the event is funded by an Australian Government ANZAC Centenary Grant, Tweed Heads and Coolangatta RSL Sub-branch and Twin Towns Services Club.

It is the centrepiece of what are expected to be two moving and important services – the first – dawn at Jack Evans and then the second, the traditional march and service will march off from Goodwin Park Coolangatta at 10.30am with the morning service starting at the Memorial in Chris Cunningham Park from 11am.

Sub-branch member Dr John Griffin said both the dawn service at Tweed and the morning service at Coolangatta ‘have become iconic events in their own rights in this region, drawing large crowds both to march and view the proceedings’.

‘But this year we wanted to do something memorable to mark this special and poignant occasion. This event has been more than a year in the planning, with the finishing touches now being added to this, the most ambitious and momentous endeavour ever undertaken by this organisation,’ Dr Griffin said.

The man charged with bringing the sights and sounds of that fateful long ago morning to the contemporary crowd and bringing the vision of the Tweed Heads & Coolangatta RSL to life is Mick James from Venutech Lighting and Audio.

Mick believes it will be a goose-bump moment and said he hoped the soundtrack made people realise that war was real.

‘There will eight towers of speakers and lighting and special effects to bring the re-enactment to life,’ he said.

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