Busselton monument turns 100

The Busselton RSL Branch has celebrated the 100th anniversary of the Busselton War Memorial by sharing the fascinating history behind the monument's construction.

The memorial, originally known as the Soldier's Memorial, was constructed in late 1919 using handmade sandstone from Donnybrook.

According to Busselton RSL research officer Joy Dalgleish, the sandstone was transported to Busselton by train before the structure was designed and built by sculptor P. Porcelli for just £140.

The memorial was unveiled in an official ceremony on January 6, 1920.

The war memorial was the first to be built in the district, with people from across the South West responding to newspaper advertisements to have names etched on the memorial.

At the time of completion, Mrs Dalgleish said the Busselton War Memorial was the tallest monument in the state and contained the names of 180 World War I servicemen.

In August, 1951, a second plaque was added with the names of 33 servicemen from the district who had lost their lives in World War II.

Mrs Dalgleish said the war memorial had been badly neglected and graffitied until the public vowed to save it, with the memorial receiving a significant facelift in 1984.

Since then, garden beds, memorial walls, paved pathways and a podium have been built and maintained at the site.

If you have any information you believe may be of value to the Busselton RSL, contact research officer Joy Dalgleish on 0439 321 101 or email pete.joy@westnet.com.au