CHUNUK BAIR MEMORIAL
NZ - 856
The Memorial records on panels of Hopton Wood stone the names of over 800 officers and men of the New Zealand Expeditionary Force who died in 1915 and who have no known grave. The screen wall bears the following inscription:
IN MEMORY OF THESE OFFICERS, NON-COMMISSIONED OFFICERS AND MEN OF THE NEW ZEALAND EXPEDITIONARY FORCE WHO LOST THEIR LIVES IN THE HEROIC ASSAULT ON THE HEIGHTS OF SARI BAIR, 6TH-10TH AUGUST, 1915, IN THE CAPTURE OF CHUNUK BAIR, AND IN SUBSEQUENT BATTLES AND OPERATIONS FROM AUGUST TO DECEMBER, 1915, AND WHO ARE NOT DEFINITELY RECORDED AS BURIED IN THIS OR ADJOINING CEMETERIES.
A little further north-west of the memorial is the monument which bears the words:
IN HONOUR OF THE SOLDIERS OF THE NEW ZEALAND EXPEDITIONARY FORCE. 8TH AUGUST 1915. FROM THE UTTERMOST ENDS OF THE EARTH.
Chunuk Bair was one of the main objectives in the Battle of Sari Bair (6th-10th August 1915); it was to be reached by way of Rhododendron Spur, and the attack on Chunuk Bair itself was to be carried out by two columns of the New Zealand Infantry Brigade, starting from the outposts on the shore and proceeding up the Sazli Beit Dere and the Chailak Dere. Meanwhile the New Zealand Mounted Rifles were to clear the foothills. The Mounted Rifles cleared the foothills, including Bauchop's Hill (named from Lt. Col. A. Bauchop, C.M.G., commanding the Otago Mounted Rifles, who was mortally wounded in this action) and Table Top. The New Zealand Infantry reached Rhododendron Spur, where they were joined by the 10th Gurkha Rifles, from further North, and reinforced by the 8th Welch, the 7th Gloucesters, the Auckland Mounted Rifles, and the Maori Contingent. The Wellington Infantry and some of the Gloucesters and Welch (led by Lt. Col. W. G. Malone, commanding the Wellingtons, who was killed during the action) reached the summit, and were later joined by men of the Auckland Infantry and Mounted Rifles. These troops, after repulsing incessant Turkish attacks, were reinforced by the Otago Battalion and the Wellington Mounted Rifles; and the 6th Gurkhas and the 6th South Lancashire Regiment came in on the left, between Chunuk Bair and Hill "Q". The 6th Loyal North Lancashire Regiment relieved the force at Chunuk Bair on the evening of the 9th, and later part of the 5th Wilts came up; but on the morning of the 10th the position was taken by a determined and overwhelming counter-attack, carried out by a Turkish Army Corps under the personal superintendence of General Liman von Sanders, and led by Mustapha Kemal Pasha. The loss of Chunuk Bair marked the end of the effort to reach the central hills of the Peninsula. So far as this sector of the front was concerned, the line remained unaltered between Chunuk Bair and Rhododendron Spur until the evacuation in December 1915. The infrequent cases in which New Zealand soldiers fell in the last four months of 1915 and could not be buried in a cemetery find their place on this Memorial. For the most part, the officers and men of the Wellington Regiment, the Auckland Regiment and the Auckland Mounted Rifles, commemorated here, fell on the 8th August; those of the Canterbury Regiment, on the 7th; those of the Wellington Mounted Rifles, on the 9th; and those of the other units, during the five days of the battle.
Chunuk Bair Memorial stands on the
north-west side of Chunuk Bair Cemetery, on the ridge which runs north-east from
Brighton Beach. There is a road leading to Battleship Hill on one side and Koja
Dere on the other, and on the further side of the road is a bank, surmounted by
a long screen wall with a cross engraved on the raised centre. It is well
signposted as you approach the ANZAC area.
NAMES OF INTEREST
- Killed commanding the battalion 8th August 1915, aged 56.
- Killed by shell fire following capture of Chunuk Bair; only 70 out of 760 from his battalion were left at the end of the day.
- Born in London, at varying times he was a solicitor, barrister, and farmer.
- Direct link to this page on ANZAC Officers died.