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Additional funds for Victoria Cross Memorial.

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The Hon. Danna Vale MP Minister for Veterans' Affairs Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence

The Hon Eric Abetz Special Minister of State Liberal Senator for Tasmania

Media Release

Embargoed until 0001 Saturday 10 May 2003 VA044


The Federal Government has now committed more than $130,000 to Tasmania’s Victoria Cross Memorial, with the announcement of an additional grant for the project.

Addressing the Tasmanian RSL Congress, the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Danna Vale, announced she had approved a new grant of $36,000 under the Saluting Their Service program, in addition to $100,000 in Federal Government funding already committed to the project.

“The VC Memorial, to be dedicated tomorrow, commemorates the Tasmanian soldiers who have been recognised with the Commonwealth’s highest award for valour,” Mrs Vale said.

“Since 1900, 96 Australians have been awarded the Victoria Cross for their bravery in conflicts, including the Anglo-Boer War, World War I, the Russian Intervention, World War II and the Vietnam War.

“Tasmania can proudly lay claim to 13 of Australia’s VC recipients, including the first Australian-born soldiers to win the VC, Lieutenant Guy Wylly and Trooper John Bisdee, as well as Australia’s most decorated serviceman, Colonel Harry Murray.”

Special Minister of State and Liberal Senator for Tasmania, Eric Abetz, welcomed the new funding, which would meet the final costs of the project, including the installation of an educational soundscape.

“The Federal Government provided the initial funding of $100,000 as

part of the Centenary of Federation in 2001, in recognition of the importance of the VC Memorial in commemorating the service of Tasmanians,” Senator Abetz said.

“The Tasmanian Government and the Hobart City Council have also provided financial support for the memorial.

“I am pleased the Government has reaffirmed its support for the development of the memorial, through the provision of an additional grant of $36,000 to meet the final costs of the project.”

Mrs Vale said the Tasmanian RSL deserved full credit for conceiving the idea of a memorial honouring Tasmania’s Victoria Cross recipients.

“It is an innovative and truly unique memorial with interpretive panels that include the citations of all Tasmanian VC recipients. The memorial also has a soundscape that assists in conveying the message of remembrance and commemoration to visitors to the site.

“The Victoria Cross Memorial will be a fitting and enduring tribute to 13 very special Tasmanians and a place of reverence where generations of Australians can commemorate their service and sacrifice,” Mrs Vale said.

Media contact: Rachael Thompson (Mrs Vale) 0417 265 289 Lincoln Folo (Senator Abetz) 0407 100 523

The official dedication of the VC Memorial will take place at the Hobart Cenotaph at 12 noon on Sunday 11 May 2003.