The Origins of Anzac Day

In December 1914, during preparations for the invasion of Gallipoli, in what is now Turkey, the New Zealand Expeditionary Force contingents were grouped together for the first time as the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC). Together, they provided almost half of the total number of troops in the Allied Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (MEF). From this point on, all combined Australian and New Zealand forces became known as ‘ANZACs’.

On 25 April 1915, Australians and New Zealanders landed together at Gallipoli, at a place later called Anzac Cove. This date has been adopted ever since as the national day of remembrance for war dead in both countries. This first observance of Anzac Day in New Zealand took place in 1916.

Join us in honouring our airmen at our Anzac Day Service at 12pm on 25 April in the Thérèse Angelo Wing at the Air Force Museum.