Hi I'm Jack, weekends are too short, so I love to make the most of the time we have. I also love cooking and occasionally write a blog of the food I love to cook, if you'd like to join me for dinner, click here dinnerwithjack.blogspot.com.au
Published June 4th 2012
HMAS Sydney II Memorial - WA Day Weekend Getaway – Geraldton
My wife and I ventured up the Brand Highway to Geraldton for the WA Day long weekend, a trip we make regularly to visit family. The drive up the Brand was great with little traffic, thanks to the new Indian Ocean Drive now bearing a fair share of the load.
People will often remark "What's there to do in Geraldton?" when told of our plan to travel north for a weekend and the answer is always the same "There are lots of things to do in Geraldton, you just need to know where to look", here is one such thing, a must do!
One of the first places I was keen to visit on this trip was the HMAS Sydney II Memorial. The last time I was here, parts of the site were barricaded off, as a new feature of the memorial was being constructed in lieu of the ships location having been discovered. The bronze statue of a woman looking out to sea was also missing, as she had been sent off to be polished and spruced up for the reopening of the completed memorial.
To the north of the dome there is the aforementioned bronze statue of The Waiting Woman looking desperately out to sea as she awaits news of the ill fated ship. Towering over her is The Stele, which is a replica of the Sydney's bow. The Australian flag is proudly waving in the breeze on top of this feature.
The new feature, The Pool of Remembrance, has three steps going down to a fourth step which is engraved with 644 seagulls. This step has water cascading over its edge, spilling onto and over the floor which is a map depicting the WA coastline from Geraldton to Carnarvon. A little off from centre is the 645th silver seagull, 2 metres tall with wings spread wide, as if in full flight marking the location far off shore. The GPS coordinates of the spot are engraved in the surface near to where the gull's wing touches the surface of the water - showing the point HMAS Sydney II and all its crew, 645 in all have laid at rest, after being sunk by the German raider HSK Kormoranin in a battle off the coast of Carnarvon in 1941.
This significant memorial has been beautifully thought out and designed. It is situated on top of Mount Scott, overlooking the City of Geraldton and out across the wide expanse that is the Indian Ocean in which the Sydney and her crew now lay. It truly is a beautiful and moving monument to the brave men who gave their lives fighting for our beautiful country.
I rmember stopping by this place on our way north to Monkey Mia. A very nice spot with excellent view. The kids--being 3 and 6--didn't really understand the significance of the Memorial, but they enjoyed themselves running around the large ground.
Thanks for you comment Judith, if you were there before November 2011, it is well worth calling again next time you pass, the Pool of remembrance in worth seeing, I am a little sad I did not go back at night to see it all lit up, will have on my list of things to do next time I am in Geraldton!