New $1 Anzac Coin

13 February 2014:


Centenary Anzac dollar_website

The Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC, Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson, and Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, The Hon. Steven Ciobo MP, today unveiled a new $1 circulating 2014 coin featuring the Centenary of Anzac logo and produced by the Royal Australian Mint.

The special commemorative 2014 $1 circulating coin features the official logo of the Anzac Centenary, including the image of an Australian soldier, head bowed and rifle reversed in solemn reflection and the words ‘100 Years of Anzac – The Spirit Lives’. The coin is rimmed with a motif reflecting the sun’s rays as captured on the Australian Army’s Rising Sun badge.

Senator Ronaldson said the Anzac Centenary would be one of the most important commemorations in Australia’s history and it was fitting that the Royal Australian Mint had created this coin.

“The Centenary of Anzac will be one of the most defining moments in our nations’ story and the creation of a coin is a permanent way to reflect on and remember this commemorative period,” Senator Ronaldson said.

“I am delighted that the Mint has chosen to feature the Centenary of Anzac logo on the 2014 circulating coin.”

Mr Ciobo said introducing this coin into circulation would mean that for many years to come these coins would pass through the hands of thousands of Australians.

“Every time someone looks at this coin it will remind them of the service and sacrifice of our past and present Australian Defence Force members. In particular, of those who died in the First World War,” Mr Ciobo said.

Students from St Andrew’s Primary School in Werribee attended the launch and were presented with coins.

Royal Australian Mint CEO, Ross MacDiarmid, said the Mint had a proud tradition of commemorating Australian military history with the production of a coin and the 2014 $1 ‘100 Years of Anzac – The Spirit Lives’ circulating coin would add to that.

“The Anzac Spirit has long been invoked as part of the essence of what it is to be Australian. The Anzac Centenary reminds us all that it is a living spirit and this coin captures aspects of that spirit in a permanent form,” Mr MacDiarmid said.

For more information about or an image of the 2014 $1 Century of Service circulating coin please visit or contact below.


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Gallipoli Ballot – What next?

Gallipoli ballot logos_website

Information from the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs released Sunday, 2 February 2014:


42,582 applications were received from Australians planning to attend the Dawn Service at Gallipoli in 2015, marking 100 years since the landing of Australian and New Zealand troops during the First World War.

The Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC, Senator the Hon. Michael Ronaldson, said the government’s contracted ticket provider would now begin the process of confirming applications.

“Ticketek will review and remove any duplicate, incomplete or incorrect applications before the ballot is drawn. The ballot draw is automated and comprises of four cascades, providing some preference for direct descendants and veterans with qualifying or overseas service,” Senator Ronaldson said.

“Outside the ballot, there are places for Australian First World War widows who will be included as part of Australia ’s official representative group and 400 places for secondary school children and their chaperones.”

Senator Ronaldson said all ballot applicants, successful and unsuccessful, will be notified of the outcome before Anzac Day 2014.

“Successful applicants are encouraged to make and pay for all travel arrangements as soon as they receive confirmation of their success in the ballot. This needs to include flights, accommodation, transport and travel insurance. Proof of travel such as an airline ticket or tour package must be provided to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs by 25 October 2014 in order to receive attendance passes,” Senator Ronaldson said.

“Those who are unsuccessful, and who elected to be on the waitlist, will be notified of any passes that may become available from those who can no longer attend, up until 31 March 2015.

“Alternatively, unsuccessful applicants are encouraged to visit Gallipoli at another time in 2015, attend another Anzac Day service overseas such as Villers-Bretonneux in France , or watch the broadcast of the Gallipoli and Villers-Bretonneux services live on the ABC on Anzac Day.”

Senator Ronaldson said a full program of activities would be rolled out over the Anzac Centenary period 2014-2018 to mark the 100th anniversary of Australia ’s involvement in the First World War. He encouraged communities across Australia to get involved by applying to their local federal Member of Parliament for funding under the Anzac Centenary Local Grants Program. There is funding of up to $125,000 per electorate which needs to be applied for before 30 May 2014.

For more information on Gallipoli 2015 visit or the Anzac Centenary visit

Media inquiries: Minister Ronaldson: Brad Rowswell6277 7820 or 0417 917 796

Department of Veterans’ Affairs Media: 02 6289 6203

Ballot System Cascade

The ballot will operate in four cascades (omitting widows of Australian First World veterans and 200 double passes (400 places) for secondary school students and their chaperones to be distributed outside the ballot.)

Cascade Inclusion in ballot Outcome Unsuccessful applicants


Applicants who have indicated “Direct Descendent” with preference to first generation – sons and daughters 400 double passes (800 passes) Those who have also indicated “Veteran” go to 2nd cascade. Those who haven’t go to 3rd cascade


Applicants who have indicated “Veteran” 400 double passes (800 passes) Go to 3rd cascade


Applicants who haven’t indicated either “Direct Descendent” or “Veteran” (i.e. the Australian public), plus unsuccessful applicants from 1st & 2nd cascades 3,000 double passes (6,000 passes) Those who have indicated willingness to be placed on a wait list go to 4th cascade. Those who haven’t are out of the ballot


Applicants who have indicated willingness to be placed on a wait list Establish a priority order for allocating passes as they become available


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Gallipoli 2015 ballot closing SOON

Gallipoli ballot logos_website

On 25 April 2015 the 100th anniversary of the ANZAC landings at Gallipoli will be commemorated.

A fair, open and transparent ballot will be held to allocate places to Australians and New Zealanders planning to attend official Anzac Day commemorations at Gallipoli in 2015. (

You will need to hurry if you wish to lodge an application as

the ballot closes on 31 January 2014.

Click here to fill out a ballot form.

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Season’s Greetings

Season’s Greetings

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

Christmas Card_12

From the 2013/14 FFFAIF Management Committee.

Peace on earth and goodwill to all men

Lest We Forget


The office of the FFFAIF will be taking a break over the Festive Season and will re-open on Tuesday 28th January, 2014. The secretary will be checking emails, occassionally, throughout this period so there may be a delay in responses to

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Remembrance Day

Monday 11th November 2013

Remembrance Day (11 November) marks the anniversary of the armistice which ended the First World War (1914–18). Each year Australians observe one minute silence at 11 am on 11 November, in memory of those who died or suffered in all wars and armed conflicts.

FFFAIF webpage Remembrance Day 2013

Lest We Forget

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2013 Annual General Meeting

2013 Annual General Meeting

Saturday 28 September 2013

Bathurst RSL Club
114 Rankin St
Bathurst NSW


Registration from 2:15 pm.
The AGM will be followed by a dinner commencing at 6:30pm.


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Following the outstanding success of the 2010 and 2012 FFFAIF Western Front and Gallipoli Commemoration Tours, the Families and Friends of the First AIF are offering a similar chance for association members to partake in two tours in 2014.

This historic year commemorates the centenary of the commencement of World War 1 with tours coinciding with the anniversary of the declaration of war in August 1914. Join us on the battlefields and for this ‘Blighty’ experience to commemorate.

2012 Tour Group_VBPhoto: 2012 FFFAIF Tour Group at Australian Memorial, Villers Bretonneux

You are invited to join other members of the FFFAIF on one or both of these unique commemorative journeys to France, Belgium and the United Kingdom in 2014. Be with us on the Somme or in Flanders. Explore the tunnels and trenches of the region. Commemorate our brave ‘Diggers’ who have forged the memory of the First ‘Anzacs’. Be with us in London on the 4th August 2014; the Centenary Anniversary of the declaration of World War I in 1914. Join us for the experience of a lifetime with like-minded and dedicated travellers.

Option 1: 2014 FFFAIF Western Front Commemorative Tour

12 days – 14th to 25th July 2014 (to be confirmed)
Tour starts: Amsterdam – towards Ieper, Belgium
Tour Finishes: Paris Charles De Gaulle Airport

Visiting battlefields of significance to the Australians and a variety of other WWI sites across France and Belgium, this tour will allow members to immerse themselves in the history and follow in the footsteps of our ANZAC and Commonwealth forebears.

The tour is designed to encompass the major battlefields with minimal changes in accommodation, thus providing maximum exploration time on the ground. The famous centres of Ieper in Belgium, and Arras, Albert and Peronne (Assevillers) in France will be home for the 12 nights. Museums, cemeteries, memorials, tunnels, special commemorations, historic buildings and the chance to meet European and other members of the FFFAIF during group dinners and events will ensure a most memorable journey.

Price: $3,290 pp* (Twin share) – Single Supplement available ($600 pp)

2012 Tour _ VingacourtPhoto: The 2012 Tour Group visiting Vignacourt,
home of the Lost Diggers Photographic Exhibition

Option 2: 2014 FFFAIF United Kingdom ‘Blighty’ Commemorative Tour

12 days – 26th July to 6th August 2014
Tour starts: Paris Charles De Gaulle Airport
Tour Finishes: London Heathrow Airport

Starting in Paris, the UK ‘Blighty’ Commemorative Tour will cross the English Channel via the one of the many ‘Blighty’ routes as in World War I returning to England. We will skirt the French coastline and depart from Cherbourg or Le Harve (TBC), and travel to Portsmouth via North Sea ferry (TBC). We will then have to opportunity to visit many of the military sites of southern England, especially the Anzac training grounds of the Salisbury Plain, museums, war cemeteries, ancient sites, such as Stonehenge and Old Sarum, and more. We will conclude our tour in London, with visits to the Imperial War Museum, Horse Guards, and Hyde Park Memorials. The highlight of the tour being the participation in the 100th Anniversary commemoration of the declaration of war in London on the 4th August. This will be the opportunity of a lifetime.

Price: $3,690 pp* (Twin share) – Single Supplement available ($900 pp)

St George's Churchyard FovantPhoto: One of the many 2014 UK destinations:
St George’s Church Fovant.

Note: Group departure for the Western Front Tour will depart Sydney on specified date (TBC).

The tours offer 12 days on the Western Front (France and Belgium) and 12 days in Nth France and the United Kingdom.

The tours are designed to link with each other on or around the 26th July 2014 at Paris Charles De Gaulle Airport. Participants of both tours should stay in the designated hotel at the airport for departure the next morning on the UK tour (Included in tour cost). Tour and holiday extensions before or after group departure are possible. We can assist with extra travel arrangements. Itinerary above lists highlights of the tours only. Final itinerary will be determined closer to departure and could change minimally throughout.

* Land content only. Prices based on current Australian exchange rates and subject to currency fluctuations; minimum numbers of 25 per tour.

Option – Saver
For FFFAIF Members who join both tour options, there is a saving of $300 pp.

What to do next:
Contact – Chris Munro, FFFAIF Secretary on details below to indicate interest in the FFFAIF 2014 Western Front Commemorative Tour option and/or the FFFAIF 2014 United Kingdom ‘Blighty’ Commemorative Tour. Note the saving for members who participate in both tours.

Contact details:
Secretary FFFAIF

Please note: Requirements for participation in the 2014 tours include current membership of the FFFAIF – either standard, concession or family membership. The tours will fill quickly and spaces will be allocated in order of receipt of expressions of interest until full.

Interested in joining the Tour but not a member of the FFFAIF.  Find out more by clicking here.

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Pozieres Service: Sydney


(Story and photos by FFFAIF Vice President Jim Munro)

The annual Commemorative Service for the Battle of Pozieres was held at Saint Columba Church, Woollahra on Sunday 21 July 2013. The band of The Scots College Pipes and Drums heralded the start of the service as they marched down Ocean/Forth Street towards the church. Lieutenant-Colonel Terry Betts Commanding Officer of 1/19 Royal New South Wales Regiment, took the salute.

 2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 001a webPhoto: The Scots College Pipes and Drums as Lieutenant-Colonel Terry Betts Commanding Officer of 1/19 Royal New South Wales Regiment takes the salute accompanied by Rev. Dr. Alan Russell,

More than 110 people attended the service including Members of the Association of the First Infantry Battalions and Association Des Anciens Combatants Francais (Association of French Veterans NSW).

2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 004a web 2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 010 webPhoto: The Queen’s and Regimental Colours of the First Battalion entering the church carried by the Colour Party of the RNSWR

The standards were received at the altar by Rev. Dr. Alan Russell, who conducted the Service along with Rev Brian Jago.

2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 020a webPhoto: The Queen’s and Regimental Colours of the First Battalion laid upon the altar during the service along with the Australian and 1st Bn Association flags

Beneath the Pozieres Cross and the original 1st Bn Colours, The Last Post was played by Bugler Ms Jean Hope and The Ode was recited by WO1 Nathan Ahearn RSM 1/19th RNSWR. The Lament was followed by Reveille being sounded.

2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 028 webPhoto: The Pozieres Cross and 1st Battalion AIF flags

The French National Anthem was sung by Tanith Bryce and pianist Mme Giselle Hoarau accompanied the singing of the Australian National Anthem.

Rev Dr Alan Russell reflected on the passing of Major-General Sandy Pearson AO, DSO, OBE, MC (Retd) during the year.

At the conclusion of the Service the Queen’s and Regimental Colours of the First Battalion were returned to the Colour Party of the RNSWR and the First Battalion Flag and Australian flags were returned.

2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 037 webPhoto: At the conclusion of the Service the Queen’s and Regimental Colours of the First Battalion were returned to the Colour Party of the RNSWR by Rev. Russell

Following the Service, there was an opportunity to reflect on the memory of those who lost their lives at Pozieres on 23 July 1916. On display was the photo of an unidentified Digger who members of the Congregation seek to be able to reunite with his relatives. 2013-07-21 Pozieres Service Sydney 049 webPhoto: The Soldier on the Wall

Lest We Forget


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Fromelles Update July 2013

Half of the Diggers from Pheasant Wood have been named.

The graves of 124 of the 250 soldiers whose remains were recovered from the communal pits near Pheasant Wood, Fromelles in French Flanders and were reburied with full military honours in the new Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery in 2010 are now identified with their names.  The names of another 98 Australian soldiers buried by the German Reserve Bavarian Infantry Regiment soldiers following the Battle of Fromelles on the night of 19th July, 1916 and continuing into the 20th are known, but identifying which soldier is in which grave remains the challenge that can only be solved now by matching the soldier’s DNA with that of a descendant. Of the remaining 1,111 Australian soldiers killed in the Battle of Fromelles with no known grave (1,333 Australian soldiers with no known grave less 222 known to have been buried near Pheasant Wood) , a further 28 soldiers are buried in the Cemetery, but their identity is not known.

The Fromelles Identification Board in April announced the names of 5 Australian soldiers who will have their names inscribed on individual headstones. The soldiers are:

Private Thomas William Francis (2584), 29th Battalion

Private William O’Donnell (319), 29th Battalion

Private Thomas Henry Bills (605), 31st Battalion

Private John Gordon McKenzie (151), 32nd Battalion

Private William Barber (346), 32nd Battalion

Read the media reports:
Fromelles Diggers Identified 

Five more Fromelles WW1 dead identified

More Aussie Soldiers from Battle of Fromelles Identified 

The graves of these recently identified soldiers were re-dedicated with named headstones at the Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery commemoration service on 19 July 2013.

Click here for a list of the names of the 124 soldiers identified so far.

Follow the link to see a list of the names of the 222 Australian soldiers known to be buried in the Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery -Fromelles Extended Working List by Name .

This list is only the beginning of the story of these men who paid the ultimate sacrifice. Countless hours of research by dedicated volunteers has brought the stories behind these Diggers to life again.

Nine Network’s Sixty Minutes Program featured interviews with FFFAIF members Tim Lycett and Sandra Playle, screened on 7 June 2013 in the segment Known Unto God. Extended interviews can be seen by clicking here.

Fromelles The Final Chapters by FFFAIF members Tim Lycett and Sandra Playle is now available in book shops.


The book will be launched by two other members – Lambis Englezos AM, and Annette Tebb – in Melbourne on Saturday 27th July.

Please click  here to see the launch invitation in more detail.


Anyone who believes that they are related to one of the Australian soldiers who are still missing from the Battle of Fromelles are asked to register their details with Unrecovered War Casualties – Army via the online registration tool at or by calling toll-free in Australia on 1800 019 090(9am to 5pm Monday to Friday) .



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2013 John Laffin Memorial Lecture

Members and their guests are invited to
The John Laffin Memorial Lecture

John Laffin 1922-2000
Sunday, 7 July 2013

Michele Bomford:
Beaten Down by Blood: The Battle of Mont St. Quentin–Peronne 1918
Graham Wilson:
Australian Railway Units of the AIF during The Great War.

 10:00 am for 10:30 am start
Randwick Barracks Function Centre
(Building 101)

Avoca Street entrance opposite Araluen Street, Randwick.

Attendees should bring photo identification e.g. licence or passport.
On-site car parking is available.

Entry: $10 per head for morning tea, a light lunch and afternoon tea.

 Security: Admission to Department of Defence site will only be granted to those people with names on the RSVP list and with photo identification.

RSVP by Friday, 28 June
phone or message the FFFAIF on
0401 467 819.

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