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On June 28 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand – heir to the throne of the mighty Austrian-Hungarian Empire – was assassinated in Sarejevo. That event is considered the catalyst for the start of World War 1. However, from the late 19th century tensions throughout Europe were high as the macro-politics of the region played out. Sarejevo’s location in Bosnia put it at the strategic heart of the ongoing push and pull of the European empires. The great European alliances had been mobilized and “The Great War” began.
This was to be the “war to end all wars”. Alas, history has proven otherwise.
Australia’s entry into World War 1 coincided with the British declaration of war on Germany on August 14, 1914. Germany had launched an invasion on France through the previously unaligned Belgium, with whom Britain has a mutual defence pact.
The first significant Australian act of war was on 17 Sept 1914 when the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Forces took possession of New Guinea, which had been under German control. However, the engagement that is credited as shaping the Australian national identity like no other was the infamous landing on 25 April 1915 and subsequent eight month campaign at Gallipoli ( in latter-day Turkey) where our troops had been despatched by their British commanders to help deal with the territorial aspirations of the Ottoman Empire.
Post Gallipoli the AIF Light Horse brigade remained in the Middle East and North Africa to defend the strategically important Suez canal and then onwards with the British into Palestine, Lebanon and Syria. The infantry division progressively transferred to the battlefields of France and the associated horrors of the many battles on the European Western Front. Over forty thousand Australians were killed or injured on the Western Front alone.
Approximately sixty-five million men marched to this war and over eight million never returned. More than fifty percent of all soldiers were wounded. From the fledgling Australian nation of less than five million people, nearly four hundred and twenty thousand Australian men enlisted for battle, of whom more than sixty thousand were killed and one hundred and fifty-six thousand wounded, gassed or taken prisoner. This war affected communities deeply and permanently.
Australian enlistments represented nearly forty percent of the male population aged between eighteen and forty-four years of age. Anecdotally, we also know that many younger or older men misrepresented their birthdates to enlist. This left a huge void at home but Australian women volunteered in droves for service in auxiliary roles such as cooks, drivers, munitions workers and farm workers. Nurses were welcomed into the armed forces and served near the front lines in Egypt, France and Germany but applications from women for overseas service from other professions were generally refused.
World War 1 effectively ended with the signing of an armistice on 11 November 1918. When news of the armistice reached Australia late in the day on November 11, 1918, celebrations around the nation were exuberant. The streets of Melbourne were thronged with crowds who climbed on trams, waved flags and made as much noise as they could with songs, firecrackers and musical instruments.
November 11 continues to be recognized annually as Remembrance Day or Armistice Day, with 11 am being the universal time for a one minute reflective silence…. the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.
Just 5️⃣ days to go until the new We Love Aintree cafe opens! Don’t worry!! We've got your coffee needs covered in the mean time (thanks so The Coffee Mill) - drop by for a coffee at our pop up coffee cart from 8am to 4pm all week until opening (on Saturday) ☕????????
Did you know our new cafe will be 100% not for profit? This means instead of profits going to individuals or shareholders, 100% of profits will go back into the community ???????? Events & programs aimed to connect neighbours & build the community will be at the forefront! Every time you buy a coffee or some breakfast at the new cafe you'll be supporting things like playgroup, the community garden & tennis club ???????????? Follow We Love Aintree for more info #connectingneighbours #lovewhereyoulive #communityinaction
Time is running out to secure your ticket for our next traditional cooking feast! Due to our special 50% OFF DISCOUNT - tickets are selling fast...get yours NOW ????️ http://bit.ly/Free2Feed #freetofeedmelbourne #cuisinecooking #welovewoodlea
Congratulations to the Aintree Cricket Club for organising such a successful debut season of Winter Wickets! We're so proud to be sponsors of this great competition & we hope to see you all back again next year ???????? #cricketforlife #weloveaintree #winterwickets
This Sunday will be the last day Go West Eatery & Tuckshop will be open before We Love Aintree transform the space into a social enterprise cafe ???? A BIG THANK YOU on behalf of the Woodlea team & local community to Go West Eatery & Tuckshop for your wonderful hospitality over the last 3+ years - you’ve been our local go-to for daily coffee fixes & your delicious brekky & lunch dishes will be missed...There’s still time to visit Go West Eatery & Tuckshop this week to say your farewells & get your final menu fixes ☕ ???? ???? Check out some of our favourite Go West Eatery & Tuckshop memories below #melbournecafe #gowestcafe #communityinaction
????HOUSE & LAND EXCLUSIVE???? We've partnered with Homebuyers Centre Victoria to bring you this exceptional 2-storey package for only $547,300! With great inclusions & huge floor plan this exclusive deal won't be around for long! Schedule your appointment now to find out more http://bit.ly/2KW40z2 #dreamhome #Newhome #housegoals
Mark this Sunday in your calendars...your local Rockbank Station is hosting an Opening Celebration from 10am - 1pm which is set to include entertainment, activities, food PLUS so much more! We'll also be there to help you celebrate & will be giving away special Woodlea gifts - see you there ???????????? #party #welovewoodlea #trainstationopening
Go West Eatery & Tuckshop will close its doors on Sunday 25th August to pursue other opportunities in inner Melbourne. This has provided us the chance to welcome a not-for-profit social enterprise cafe that will be managed by local community organisation We Love Aintree. 100% of profits will go back into your local community, so every time you buy a coffee or make a purchase at the new cafe you’re supporting things like playgroup, the community garden and local sporting clubs. The social enterprise cafe will open on Saturday 31st August. In the meantime, a pop up coffee cart will look after your caffeine needs from Monday 26 to Friday 30th August. Follow We Love Aintree and tag your friends below to keep everyone in the loop and show support for this new social enterprise cafe coming soon.