Major General William HolmesPrint Page Print this page

A Cast bronze plaque with bas relief bust commemorates Major-General Holmes who was killed in France in 1917 during World War One.

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:20 William Holmes Street, Potts Hill , 2143
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.894207
Long: 151.643815
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:People
Actual Event STart Date:02-July-1917
Actual Event End Date:02-July-1917


Approx. Monument Dedication Date:1945
Front Inscription

In memoriam, Major General William Holmes, CMG DSO VD, Secretary to the Board 1895-1917,

Killed in France on active service 2nd July 1917.

Source: NRWM, ADB
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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