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Photographs supplied by Tom Bird

The Gallipoli Oak commemorates the centenary of ANZAC and those who served in World War One.

As part of its commitment to celebrate and preserve our environmental heritage, the National Trust  of Australia (Victoria) has identified the Gallipoli Oak tree (Quercus coccifera subsp. calliprinos) as a symbolic link between the Centenary of ANZAC, the people of Turkey and the primary school children of Victoria. The plan is to link each school with their local RSL sub-branch, so that a commemorative tree can be planted in a short ceremony to recognise the ANZAC Centenary.

The Gallipoli Oak grows along the ridges and valleys of the Gallipoli peninsula, in modern south-west Turkey. This is significant as the location of the first major battle undertaken by the ANZACs (Australian New Zealand Army Corps) during World War One.  Though the battle and subsequent campaign ultimately proved a failure, costing 26,111 Australian casualties including 8,141 deaths, it marked the beginning of the ANZAC  legend.  In Turkey the battle is also perceived as a defining moment in the history of the Turkish people.

Acorns were collected by several soldiers during the campaign and sent or brought back to Australia where some were subsequently planted. One of these soldiers was Captain William Lempriere Winter-Cooke, who planted them in his family property near Hamilton in western Victoria. Several off-spring have been planted from this tree, including the AE2 Remembrance Tree at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne.

There are likely to be many trees from these sources growing across Victoria.

The tree was replaced and a plaque unveiled on the 11th November 2005 detailing the original planting and Henry Leech`s contribution to the Dunkeld RSL. 


Address:Glenelg Highway & Sterling Street, Dunkeld, 3294
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -37.64515
Long: 142.34948
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Tree
Monument Theme:Conflict


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Friday 11th November, 2005
Front Inscription

Gallipoli Oak
Quercus Calliprinus

The first tree planted in the Arboretum by Henry F. Leech for the Dunkeld RSL on ANZAC Day, April 25th, 1993

Henry Leech enlisted in 1941 and served in the 2 / 29 Battalion in the Pacific.  He was captured by the Japanese and spent three years on the Burma Railway.

Henry has held all offices in the Dunkeld RSL, of which he is a life member 

Unveiled 11-11-2005 by J. N. Myers
President Dunkeld RSL Sub-branch

Source: MA,SKP
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au