100th anniversary


In Lemnos, the commemorations of the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign and the Anzac Day were held from the 17th to the 20th of April 2015 in the Commonwealth War Cemetery in Portianou and Moudros harbor, with great success.
At all ceremonial locations, the participation was overwhelming by people of all nationalities. The four days commemorations started with the Canadian embassy and the Ambassador Mr. Robert Peck, who in collaboration with the Commonwealth War Grave Commission and its General Director, Mrs Victoria Wallace, unveiled a commemorative plaque to the Commonwealth Cemetery of Portianou, in memory of the 2 Canadian nurses, Matron Jessie B.Jaggard and Mary Frances Elizabeth Munro, that sacrificed their lives on duty and buried in the island in 1915.
The following 2 days were days of commemorating those who sacrificed their lives for their country and their beliefs during 1915-1916, especially the ones that have been buried in Lemnos. The island of Lemnos, during that period, contributed to the Allies as their replenishment base but also as a base of rest and treating the wounded, that arrived in hundreds from the opposite shore of Gallipolli. Participants were astonished by the performance of the traditional lyra (traditional string instrument) from the local solist Mr. Nasos Kotsinadellis, who composed and performed, for the people present, a mournful Lemnian song, in honour of the lives lost. Other outstanding events were the road race “Run for Peace”, of 19.5 km distance from one Commonwealth cemetery to another, with great participation that included the island’s disabled team of road runners, and the soccer match among the naval teams of Greece and Australia.
In the commemorations participated the Australian escort battle ship HMAS Success, and 2 ships of the Hellenic naval fleet, giving a ceremonial character at the events. The fourth day, the battle ships stationed at the beautiful and historical naval bay of Moudros, reviving memories of 1915, when 200 allied battle ships made Moudros harbor the starting point of the Gallipolli campaign. The commemorative events were carried out by traditional groups and the participation exceeded 3000 audience.
The commemoration festivities in Lemnos honored with their presence: the Ambassador of Canada, Mr. Robert Peck, the Ambassador of Australia, Mr. John Griffin, the Ambassador of New Zealand in Rome, Mr. Patrick Rata, the Ambassador of Ireland, Mr. Noel Kilkenny, the Α’ Counselor of the Indian Embassy, Mr. Ram. K. Verma, the honorary Consul of France in Lemnos, Mrs. Marie-Jose Vassilikos, members of the parliament of Australia, New Zealand and Canada. The Hellenic government was represented by the general secretary of Aegean and Island Policy, Mr. Yiannis Yiannelis, the Head of the Prefecture of North Aegean, Mrs. Christiana Kalogiroy. Also the Chief of the Hellenic National Defence, Mr Mikhail Kostarakos, and the A΄ Hellenic Navy Vice Admiral, Mr. Evangelos Apostolakis, as well as a crowd of people, foreign journalists and press representatives from international media.
The Association “The Lemnos’ Friends of Anzac”, the group of volunteers that contributed in the adequate performance of the commemoration events and the attempts to highlight the role of Lemnos during the Gallipoli campaign, prepares, based on the schedule of the “ANZAC : The Next 100 years”, a series of events for the whole summer of 2015, but also for 2016. These events that include photography and cinema events, are based on the International Conference
“Anzac Day and the role of Lemnos in this historical issue” that will be held in Lemnos on the 26th-28th of June 2015, with the participation of Greek and international historians and scholars from all over the world. This conference is co-organized with the North Aegean Prefecture under the auspices of the ministries of Culture and Tourism, and a series of constituencies of the Greek and the International Community (Hellenic Tourism Association, Central Union of Greek Municipalities, Hellenic Chamber of Hotels, HABC etc.)
Kind Regards,
For “ The Lemnos Friends of Anzac “ Association
Stelios A. Mantzaris
President of B.o D.

100th anniversary