Passchendaele Memorial Ceremony

Over the last year, students from Riccarton High have been researching soldiers who are named on the Honors Board in the Riccarton Memorial Library.

Two classes, Mr Henderson’s and Ms McClintock’s, have taken part in the research project and a number of students took part off their own bat.

The research culminated this year into an exhibition ‘Out of the Shadows, Into the Light’ which is currently on display in the Upper Riccarton School and Community Library. The idea of the exhibition is to remember that those who died were family members, had jobs and lived in the community, and who the soldiers were before they went to war. It talks about their age, what colour hair they had and what their parents did for work.

Thursday October 12th marked 100 years since New Zealand’s darkest day during the battle of Passchendaele. To remember this day the Library held a memorial ceremony at St. Peters Anglican Church in Upper Riccarton. Callum and Mackay Wakefield, Year 9, from Riccarton High School attended the ceremony and Mackay read out one of the soldier’s stories. The memorial was followed by a walk out to the cemetery to lay poppies on the graves of family members who lost family in WW1.

The soldier research is now on the Christchurch City Libraries Kete webpage and will be published in to a book, so that in years to come we will remember those who lost their lives and who they were before they went to war.