Major General William HolmesPrint Page
Memorial to Major General William Holmes who was fatally wounded in World War One. General Holmes Drive that runs between Botany Bay and Sydney Airport is named in honour of him.
Holmes grew up at Victoria Barracks, Paddington, where his father was a soldier and later chief military clerk. As a boy he joined the 1st NSW Infantry Regiment as a bugler, and in 1886 was commissioned in the regiment, which he eventually rose to command. He served in the Boer War and was awarded the Distinguished Service Order.
In 1914 Holmes was given command of an expeditionary force sent to capture Rabaul and occupy the German territories. This done, he caused a mild controversy by ordering the flogging of four German colonists who had assaulted a missionary. He was next appointed to command the 5th Brigade AIF and took it to Gallipoli, and then to France. In January 1917 he was promoted major general and General Officer Commanding the 4th Australian Division.
During 1917 Holmes commanded his division through the disaster of the battle of Bullecourt, and in the success of the battle of Messines two months later. Shortly afterwards, on 2 July, he was escorting the New South Wales Premier, William Holman, near the battlefield when a German shell burst alongside and fatally wounded him.
|Address:||General Holmes Drive , near the junction of The Grand Parade, Brighton-Le-Sands, 2216|
|GPS Coordinates:||Lat: -33.957455|
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
MAJOR GENERAL W. HOLMES C M G. D S O V D
SOUTH AFRICA. NEW GUINEA . GALLIPOLI. FRANCE.
KILLED IN FRANCE ON ACTIVE SERVICE JULY 2nd 1917
DULCE ET DECORUM PRO PATRIA MORI