Busselton RSL defends plans to move war memorial

Taylar AmoniniBusselton Dunsborough Times
Busselton RSL members Bob Wood, Glenn Woodward and Kevin Casey.
Camera IconBusselton RSL members Bob Wood, Glenn Woodward and Kevin Casey. Credit: Gordon Becker

Busselton’s RSL branch has set the record straight after a series of social media attacks on its plans to relocate the local war memorial cenotaph.

The Busselton Returned and Services League has been developing plans since 2017 to move the memorial to Rotary Park opposite the clubhouse in an effort to create a more accessible oasis for remembrance and correct errors in the cenotaph.

The war memorial is currently in Victoria Square, which has increasingly posed issues for members and visitors due to its small size, lack of parking and accessibility options and road traffic concerns.

The cenotaph is also riddled with errors from years past of misspelled and missing names of fallen soldiers.

Despite the years of planning, transparency and development, the branch said misinformation was spread this week through social media and at the City of Busselton’s annual general meeting.

“We want the community to know this isn’t some rushed, ad hoc job; this has been discussed for more than five years,” Busselton RSL sub-branch president Glenn Woodward said.

“This has nothing to do with the City’s road plans; this comes down to accessibility and correcting errors.

“Not only will the move to Rotary Park allow for better accessibility for our veterans and community, it will allow us to correct spelling mistakes and missing names on the cenotaph and display our memorial plaques which currently sit in our store room.

“A war memorial is about honouring those who gave the ultimate sacrifice and allowing people to reflect quietly. That’s what we want to ensure happens now and in the future.”

Ms Woodward said claims ashes were in the cenotaph was incorrect and that ashes in the memorial wall would remain undisturbed in Victoria Square.

Plans are on display at the RSL clubrooms and people with questions or concerns about the relocation plans are encouraged to visit.

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