The Great War in Broad Outlines exhibition honours ANZAC sacrifice in Belgium

04 Apr 2017

A free exhibition honouring the World War I sacrifice of Australian soldiers on the Western Front in Belgium will be on display at Newcastle Museum from 5 to 28 April 2017.

The Great War in Broad Outlines is a touring exhibition organized by the Belgian Embassy in Canberra to highlight World War I centenary commemorations and is specifically focused on actions in Belgium. The exhibition retraces the history of the Great War over 30 illustrated panels, detailing decisive moments and important battles, as well as exploring specific themes such as propaganda.

With this timely exhibition, the embassy hopes to celebrate the memory of the Australian soldiers fallen on Belgian soil and bring their stories out to different communities.

“Thousands of Australians travel each year to the Western Front to pay their respect to their ancestors and fellow countrymen, those who fought for peace and who unfortunately fell in immense numbers in the muddy battlefields of Belgium on the other side of the world," said H.E. Jean-Luc Bodson, Ambassador of Belgium, who travelled to Newcastle today to officially open the exhibition. "Their sacrifice is one that we can never repay.”

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said this exhibition will be of interest to many families in the region whose family members served on the Western Front.

"This exhibition offers us an opportunity to learn more about the Western Front and the engagements in Belgium in which many members of our families served," said the Lord Mayor. "We appreciate the efforts of the Belgian Embassy to organize this excellent exhibition and to bring it into our regional communities that have strong connections to the Western Front.

"Australia and Belgium continue to be close friends and allies, and both nations remember the deep sacrifices made by our forebears during the Great War. It was an honour to join the Belgian Ambassador today at Newcastle Museum to open this exhibition."

Many of the engagements that occurred in Belgium are familiar to Australians by name, including Messines, Ypres, Menin Road, Polygon Road, Broodseinde, Poelcappelle and Passchendaele.

The Great War in Broad Outlines is a Belgian Department of Foreign Affairs exhibition that is supported generously by the Australian Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

“Belgium is committed to the commemoration of the Centenary of WWI and I am personally convinced that this particular project represents a great opportunity to commemorate once more our common history and keep the spirit of ANZAC alive,” said the Belgian ambassador.