When: 7 June 2017 Time: 8 a.m.
Messines refers to a ridge south of the town of Ypres (Ieper today) captured by New Zealand forces. Thanks to careful planning, the capture of Messines Ridge was a stunning success and paved the way for the main attack later in the summer by removing German forces from the dominating ground on the southern face of the Ypres Salient. New Zealand suffered 3,000 causalities and 700 deaths at Messines (Mesen today).
The New Zealand National Commemoration for the centenary of the Battle of Messines will take place on 7 June 2017 in the Messines Ridge British Cemetery, Messines, commencing at 8 a.m. The New Zealand Memorial to the Missing in the Battles of Messines in this cemetery lists 827 names. Later that morning there will be an Australian service and in the afternoon an Irish/Northern Irish service. The day will conclude with a sunset ceremony at the New Zealand Battlefield Memorial, Messines.
Access to the New Zealand commemorations is not balloted – they are open to anyone wishing to commemorate New Zealand’s military service during the First World War regardless of nationality.