Mt Clarence at the core of memorial

Tayler NealeAlbany Advertiser

Soil from Albany’s historic Mt Clarence will be used as part of an Australian War Memorial project to create the Flanders Memorial Garden in Canberra.

Representatives from the Royal Australian Navy were in town on Tuesday to collect the soil with assistance from local students, veterans from Albany RSL and City of Albany staff.

The project involves the collection of soil from significant sites throughout the country, which will be combined with soil from Flanders in Belgium to create the garden, which will have poppies growing to honour fallen servicemen and women.

Albany RSL secretary Belinda Rowland said the soil represented longevity.

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“The soil is what connects us all — it was here before us and after we are gone,” she said

City of Albany acting mayor Greg Stocks said it was an honour for Albany to be a part of the project. “Mt Clarence is a scared memorial site and it is very special that some of the soil from this place will help create a garden honouring those who died in the Great War, particularly the 12,000 Australian lives that were lost inBelgium in 1917,” he said.

“About 6000 of these fallen soldiers have no known graves, so to honour them in this way is very moving and a fitting way for our nation to remember them.”

RSL WA also selected the sites of the port of Fremantle and Blackboy Hill to collect soil for the project.

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