THE Lions Club of Gunnedah has helped complete another project at the Water Tower Museum with Lions Bob Carter and Neville Steele, erecting a new information board beside the Rosewarne School War Memorial in Anzac Park.
Information on the display board was collated by historian Ron McLean, former editor of the Namoi Valley Independent, to describe the events that led to the erection of the memorial at the tiny Rosewarne School settlement on the western outskirts of Gunnedah on May 27, 1922.
The monument contains the names of 15 soldiers - two were killed and 11 wounded. Only two came home unscathed.
Private Thomas Torrens, 32, of the 34th Battalion, was killed on Messines Ridge on the Western Front, on June 7, 1917. He has no known grave.
Private William Cavanagh, of the 54th Battalion, died in the Battle of Bullecourt on December 7, 1916, and is buried in Boncourt British Cemetery in France.
Thomas Torrens and several others whose names are on the roll of honour joined the Wallaby March as it passed through Gunnedah in December 1915.
Rosewarne was a thriving little community 100 years ago, because of its proximity to the original Gunnedah killing and freezing works just west of the (later) Gunnedah Abattoir site. The locality also had a school, which remained open until the 1930s.
Although the roll of honour reads Rosewarne Public School, not all the Diggers whose names are listed actually attended the school. Thomas Torrens, for example, came to Australia as a young man from the district of Garvagh in Northern Ireland, joining his brother John and John's wife Christina on their small property Roslyn at Rosewarne.
As the small settlement declined, the roll of honour became almost a forgotten outpost, sitting out in the open and surrounded by grass. It was rarely visited and when the coal loader was constructed in the early 1990s, access to the Rosewarne area, and the monument, was closed off.
A few descendants of the diggers and local Vietnam veterans joined forces, however, to "resurrect" the monument, relocating it beside the water tower museum in ANZAC Park in 1994.
Gunnedah & District Historical Society President Bob Leister expressed his gratitude to the Lions Club for its ongoing assistance after members last year raised information boards for the Vietnam Veteran Murals and also seating around the museum.