Anzac Day is commemorated on 25 April each year on the anniversary of Australian and New Zealand troops landing on Turkey’s Gallipoli peninsula during the First World War. One hundred years later, it has become a time where both nations pause to commemorate the service and sacrifice of tens of thousands of their servicemen and women during times of war and other operations. In 2016, The Perth Mint is honouring all Australian service personnel past and present with an Australian commemorative gold coin marking 100 years of Anzac Day.
Australia’s first Anzac Day took place on 25 April 1916, one year after the landing of Australian and New Zealand troops on Gallipoli.
By the 1920s Anzac Day ceremonies were held throughout Australia, with 25 April designated a public holiday in all states and territories by 1927.
Less than two decades later, veterans of both the First World War and the Second World War were participating in parades in capital cities and regional centers across the country. Today, servicemen and women from conflicts in Korea, Malaya, Indonesia, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, as well as peacekeepers and veterans from other allied countries, also play a prominent role in national commemorative events.
Anzac Day services are held before dawn at war memorials, and at the sites of some of the most well-known episodes in Australia’s military history. This is done to commemorate the very moment Australian and New Zealand troops landed on Gallipoli, as well as the hour of ‘stand to’ in the trenches of the Western Front. Today, thousands of Australians commemorate the fallen in the pre-dawn darkness all over the world, including the former battlefields of the First World War on Gallipoli and at Villers-Bretonneux in France.
Services are also held elsewhere around the world, to commemorate Australian service in other conflicts. There are events held at Hellfire Pass in Thailand, where Australian prisoners of war endured captivity, on the battlefields of Vietnam, in Papua New Guinea, and wherever Australian service personnel are found on current overseas deployments.
100th Anniversary Coin Release
Struck from 1/4oz of 99.99% pure gold, the centenary coin depicts the representation of an Australian First World War soldier leaning on his rifle with his head bowed in remembrance. The design includes a red poppy, the inscriptions ANZAC DAY 100 YEARS and PRIDE RESPECT GRATITUDE.
An exceptionally low mintage of no more than 1,000 Anzac Day 100 Years 2016 1/4oz Gold Proof Coins from The ANZAC Spirit 100th Anniversary Coin Series will be released by The Perth Mint.
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