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Royal Botanic Gardens Memorial, Mrs. Macquarie's Drive, Woolloomooloo

Tree Planting Ceremony, Saturday 7 October, 1995



On Saturday 7th October, 1995 a most impressive tree planting ceremony was conducted by the 2/30 Bn Association led by President Ron Maston. The ceremony commemorated the return of 2/30 Battalion, on 9/10/45 disembarking from the Esperance Bay, at the Finger Wharf, Woolloomooloo Bay.

Mr Michael Bailey acted as MC for the proceedings.

His Excellency The Hon. A.M. Gleeson A.C., Lt. Governor for N.S.W. was accompanied by Mrs Gleeson. Mr Gleeson planted a Rusty Fig as a living memorial alongside a granite monolith (the stone was selected from the Moonbi Range near Tamworth) to which is attached a brass plaque with the inscription:

"They sailed from here, survivors returned here.
We remember those who did not come home. "

A tribute to the men of 2/30 Bn AIF commanded by
Lt Col (later Brigadier) Sir FREDERICK GALLEGHAN,
DSO, OBE, SO, ED. This tree was planted on the
fiftieth anniversary of their homecoming by
His Excellency, The Honourable A.M. GLEESON AC,
Lt. Governor of NSW.

7th October; 1995,

(Coat of Arms)
President 2/30 Bn AIF

Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust

President Ron Maston introduced members of the official party, Lady Galleghan, Major General Sharp, Mr Neal Armstrong, for the Hon. Con Sciacca, Professor Chambers, Director Royal Botanical Gardens, Lt. Col. Oaky, Lt. Col. D. Aspinall, Dr. R. Richards, Mr. W. Mariner, 8 Division and Mr Alex Dandie for Ex-POW Association.

He drew attention to Mr Ron Fosterís suggestion for a tribute to mark the return of 2/30 Battalion in 1945. From this suggestion a tree planting ceremony with memorial plaque materialised. President Ron Maston, Secretary Bruce Ford and Treasurer Bert Farr liaised with Professor Chambers and Royal Botanical Gardens staff. A number of Associate Members and those of the Auxiliary assisted in ensuring the ceremony would be a success.

He outlined losses experienced by the 2/30 Battalion and expressed the hope that the site selected by Professor Chambers staff will be a fitting symbol to the spirit of the fighting 2/30 Battalion.

He invited his Excellency The Hon. Murray Gleeson to plant the tree. Mr Gleeson thanked the 2/30 Bn A.I.F. Association for the privilege of planting the tree, a symbolic act of remembrance. He congratulated Professor Chambers upon the selection of the site opposite the Finger Wharf overlooking Woolloomooloo Bay.

The Reverend Stephen Williams read a Prayer of Dedication. Bugler Glenn Owens (N.S.W. Fire Brigade) sounded Last Post and Reveille. Patron Jack Maclay recited the Ode. Bert Farr thanked Michael Bailey.

The assembly, moved to Lion Gate Lodge for morning tea. After morning tea, President Ron Maston specially thanked Professor Chambers and staff, then presented the professor with books and a Recollection tape, Professor Chambers responded being delighted to have the privilege of hosting 2/30 Bn Association. President Ron Maston thanked the Associate Members for their efforts in making the event a success. Bert Farr thanked Ron and Bruce Ford for their work in planning and execution of an exercise carried out with true military precision and efficiency.

(Source: Makan No. 315, December 1995)


Last updated 31/08/2021