New Zealand’s international First World War commemorations this year will focus on the Western Front, with Anzac Day-related ceremonies in France and Belgium and the centenary commemorations of the battles of Messines and Passchendaele.
New Zealand services for Anzac Day are held every year in France and Belgium and have been enhanced with the participation of a New Zealand Defence Force contingent for the centenary period of the First World War (2014-2018). This year ceremonies will take place in Longueval (22 April) and Le Quesnoy (23 April) in France and also in Belgium throughout Anzac Day (25 April).
Later in the year New Zealand will mark two First World War centenary commemorations, the Battle of Messines on 7 June and the Battle of Passchendaele on 12 October. Both ceremonies will be held in Belgium, at sites on the former Western Front.
It was on the Western Front that New Zealand made its most significant contribution to the First World War, and also where New Zealand suffered the greatest loss of life.
Anzac Day will also be commemorated in Gallipoli with the traditional Dawn Service at the Anzac Commemorative Site and the New Zealand Service at Chunuk Bair later that morning.
Information about the Anzac Day-related ceremonies and First World War commemorations can be found at WW100.govt.nz/international-commemorations.
New Zealand travellers intending to attend Anzac Day services overseas are encouraged to get travel insurance and register their travel details on the SafeTravel website at www.safetravel.govt.nz.
Registering with SafeTravel means that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade can keep travellers updated with travel advisory information and confirm their safety in the event of an emergency or crisis in the country they are visiting.
Anzac Day-related services
Saturday, 22 April, 3pm
New Zealand National Commemorative Service at the New Zealand Battlefield Memorial, Longueval, France
Sunday, 23 April, 6am
New Zealand Anzac Dawn Service, Le Quesnoy, France (New Zealand also participates in the French service later that morning at 11am (which includes a walk with the Le Quesnoy community to the New Zealand Memorial in the walls of the town).
Tuesday, 25 April, 6am
Anzac Day Dawn Service (joint Australia, Belgium, New Zealand service), Buttes New British Cemetery, Zonnebeke, Belgium.
Tuesday, 25 April, 11.15am
Anzac Day Last Post Ceremony, Menin Gate, Ieper, Belgium.
Tuesday, 25 April, 2pm
New Zealand National Anzac Day Service at the NZ Battlefield Memorial Mesen (Messines), New Zealand Memorial Park (within Messines Ridge British Cemetery), Nieuwzeelandersstraat, Mesen, Belgium.
Tuesday, 25 April, 4.30pm
New Zealand Service at Berks Extension Cemetery, Comines-Warneton, Belgium.
Tuesday, 25 April, 8pm
Last Post Ceremony, Menin Gate, Ieper, Belgium.
Tuesday, 25 April, 5.30am
Anzac Day Dawn Service at the Anzac Commemorative Site at Gallipoli, following an overnight vigil.
Tuesday, 25 April, 11.30am
New Zealand National Service at Chunuk Bair at Gallipoli.
New Zealand commemorations in Belgium to mark the centenaries of the battles of Messines and Passchendaele
7 June, 8am
Battle of Messines Service, Messines Ridge British Cemetery, Mesenstraat, Mesen, Belgium.
12 October, 11am
Battle of Passchendaele Service, Tyne Cot Cemetery, Vijfwegestraat, Zonnebeke, Belgium.
For more information please contact Defence Public Affairs: 021 487 980 or firstname.lastname@example.org