Construction begins on Service Nurses Memorial

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Construction has begun on the Australian Service Nurses Memorial Wall in Bundaberg, to expand and revitalise the existing Park.

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt and State Member for Bundaberg Jack Dempsey today joined members of the Bundaberg & District Ex-Service Women’s Association to inspect the project’s progress.

“The Association is to be congratulated for its efforts in ensuring the remarkable women who nursed our soldiers – both on the battlefield and upon their return to Australia – are never forgotten,” Mr Pitt said.

“Earlier this year, I announced $1668 for the Association to host an event in September commemorating 100 years since the departure of the first contingent of Australian Army Nurses from Queensland for WWI.

“I am pleased to be able to provide a further $4000, under the Federal Government’s Saluting Their Service program, which the Association applied for to assist with the cost of constructing the wall.”

State Member for Bundaberg Jack Dempsey announced a $40,970 contribution toward the Service Nurses Memorial.

“It is so important that we honour the dedication and sacrifices our hard-working nurses made during battle,” Mr Dempsey said.

“This money will go toward commemorative gardens that will include a peace garden, incorporating plaques and plants dedicated to those who paid the supreme sacrifice.

“The memorial will also include a remembrance avenue that will link the memorial pavilion to the new memorial wall and history storyboards focusing on local nurses.”

“It will be a place where all community members can come to celebrate nurses who’ve served Bundaberg and the rest of the country.”

Bundaberg & District Ex-Service Women’s Association President Jenny Waldron said the wall and gardens would breathe new life into the memorial park and extend the recognition to include all service nurses.

“There are currently 12 nurses named on the existing War Nurses Pavilion. Through extensive research, we’ve identified a further 17 nurses who were connected to the Bundaberg and Burnett regions prior to their enlistment to Gallipoli,” Ms Waldron said.

“This memorial park will now be a lasting legacy for the families and descendants of all the extraordinary nurses who served in conflicts since 1899.

“The wall will provide a place for us to lay our wreaths on Anzac Day, as we reflect on what these women did for our country. It will also be a place where Bundaberg Base Hospital staff, patients and the public can go to spend a quiet moment or two.

“The support we have received from the community, Mr Pitt, Mr Dempsey and Bundaberg Councillor Wayne Honor has been overwhelming.

“We look forward to having the memorial park finished in time for the dedication in September.”

Media contacts:

Mr Pitt: Larine Statham 0427 653 814

Mr Dempsey: Andrew Kos 0408 912 821

Bundaberg District ESWA: Jenny Waldron 0487 302 114

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