This memorial is made of polished Queensland maple timber board. It is arranged in seven panelled sections, each framed by intricately carved columns. Across the top is a single panel with the words ‘Haberfield Roll of Honour’. It lists 430 names, including four nursing sisters and 48 men who died. All lettering is in gold. It was repaired through a World War One Centenary federal grant by International Conservation Services Pty Ltd, and the restored memorial was unveiled by the Ashfield mayor on 27 April 2015. After its relocation, the memorial remained inside the original ‘School of Arts’ part of the building, it is now integrated into the design of the New Haberfield Library set to reopen in 2021.
Mayors Speech 27 April 2015. (2015 Mayor of Ashfield, Lucille McKenna OAM)
The board embodies their sacrifice and it also reminds us of how local communities everywhere across the Country were torn apart by war.
Today we remember all the Honour Boards that sit proudly in local community halls and venues such as this in towns and cities big and small throughout Australia.
It is important that local communities properly honour their citizens.
That is why Council has worked very hard to ensure that the Haberfield Honour Roll was painstakingly restored so it can sit proudly as a reminder of the sacrifices that were made in our local community.
The Haberfield Honour Roll not only tells the story of sacrifice it also tells the story of a determined local community who fought and rallied together to erect the permanent memorial.
The then Mayor of Ashfield Council – Mayor John Hammond was supportive of the idea of an Honour Roll in principal.
However, the State War Council advised him that due to ever increasing funding demands it did not think it appropriate to pursue a project that would be a drain on the local purses.
Undeterred, local residents rallied. For 18 months they fundraised, and held concerts to raise money to construct the magnificent board we see here today.
The Honour Roll is a great story of a community coming together to do what they believed was right in order to properly honour their loved ones.
Today we acknowledge their efforts and of course the sacrifices made by every single one of the 471 people named on the Honour Roll.
I am very proud to be part of today’s ceremony and I am delighted that the Honour Roll has been restored in time for the Centenary of the landings at Gallipoli.
I would like everyone who has helped make this happen. Special thanks to the Department of Veterans’ Affairs for providing funding assistance for the project.