The way we were

ABOVE: The CGMS Committee at work. St Mary’s Anglican Church Parish Hall, Kangaroo Point, played host to the group’s final meeting, but in years gone by, the homes of various committee members had been the venue after Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Woolloongabba, was not available.

Canon Garland Memorial Society (the “CGMS”) was formed as a result of a public meeting convened at the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, Hawthorne Street, Woolloongabba, on 9 July 2013.

At the end of our fifth and final year as an incorporated, community-based, volunteer-run, not-for-profit, we were able to say the original vision defined at our foundation was accomplished.

For a variety of reasons and factors beyond our control, we decided to wind-up the “incorporated” arrangements and to explore more of a social media-driven and “online interest group” model beyond 31 December 2018.

Original aims

Our Mission Statement was to fund, design and build Canon Garland Memorial – ANZAC Day Origins – accomplished at Kangaroo Point Cliffs Park, Kangaroo Point, in inner-city Brisbane – by the 100th ANZAC Day, observed on 25 April 2016, for the following reasons:

  • To honour the pivotal role the Reverend Canon David John Garland OBE had in developing ANZAC Day as a public day of solemn commemoration of The Fallen;
  • To foster public awareness of the origins of the ANZAC Day observance;
  • And to be a fount of enduring recognition of David John Garland’s devotion and service to those who served in the Australian Defence Force, in time of war and peace, and through this to to honour and uphold the ANZAC Day tradition.

It is now abundantly clear that CGMS has achieved its primary objective: The Memorial is in place.

Why Kangaroo Point?

In 1902 Canon Garland, then aged 38, was installed as Rector of South Brisbane Parish in the Church of England’s (now Anglican) Diocese of Brisbane.

The primary chapel in the parish then, as now, was Holy Trinity Church, which today is the hub of Woolloongabba Anglican Parish.

Next door as Kangaroo Point Parish, overseen until 1913, by the Reverend William Maitland Woods (1864-1927), a military chaplain to the Queensland Defence Force prior to the Federation of the States and Territories into the Commonwealth of Australia on 1 January 1901.

Woods and Garland first met when both men were associated with the Diocese of North Queensland – the former as Rector of Thursday Island Parish and the latter as Archdeacon and Administrator of the Diocese, and Rector of Charters Towers Parish.

While the Priest-in-Charge of South Brisbane, Fr Garland resided in the Parish Rectory, “Moira”, located on River Terrace, Kangaroo Point, just a short stroll from historic St Mary’s Church, where Fr Woods was Rector.

In 1915 Padre Garland re-activated his military chaplaincy commission and assumed the honorary rank of chaplain Lieutenant-Colonel in the First AIF, agitating for the role of senior organising chaplain at Brisbane’s sprawling Enoggera Army Base, the training camps of the 1st Military District and its numerous Queensland-raised battalions.

Chaplain Woods, in August that year, sailed on the troopship, HMAT A54 “Runic”, to commence his Great War-long association with the ANZAC troops fighting in the Middle East campaigns across Egypt, Syria and Palestine.

Padre Garland in 1917 followed Padre Woods to the Holy Lands, bringing with him a handsome purse of funds raised via the annual Lavender Day Appeal to further the work of chaplaincy among the men and women of the First AIF, targeting the establishment of hostels and respite services.

During this time Canon Garland was bedding down and tirelessly advocating for the format and substance of solemn, non-sectarian and civilian-run ANZAC Day observances for every 25th day of April.

At the outset Canon Garland Memorial Society explored the possibility of erecting “Canon Garland Memorial – ANZAC Day Origins” in the grounds of Holy Trinity Church, but when the Kangaroo Point Cliffs Park site – bordering the historic St Mary’s Anglican Church – became available, the symbolism of bringing the civic and secular connections between Reverend Woods and Canon Garland, as well as the spot’s astonishing ambience and visual amenity made it an obvious and logical home.

With the Memorial being clad in similar porphyry (“Brisbane tuff”) stone to that with which St Mary’s Church itself is built, the effect invokes a sense of ANZAC Day having sprung from the bedrock on which the City of Brisbane itself built – on publicly-owned land straddling the secular world and the non-secular, just like Canon Garland in his lifetime of service to God, Country and Empire.

And this is singularly appropriate as the citizens of the City of Brisbane gave ANZAC Day to the world.

The CGMS hopes Canon Garland Memorial – ANZAC Day Origins will forever stand as a civilian expression of the honour and gratitude owed to all the sons and daughters of Australia who have answered their country’s call in time of war and peace.

Beginnings, endings

The Society began as a community-based, not-for-profit, volunteer-run organisation incorporated under Model Rules and was registered with the Queensland Government’s Office of Fair Trading and the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission.

The group’s final General Meeting was convened on the evening of Thursday, 13 December 2018, inside historic St Mary’s Church Parish Hall, Kangaroo Point.

The unanimous decision of members was to accept the Management Committee’s recommendation to become an “unincorporated”, “virtual” entity – in the style of an interest group – beyond 31 December 2018.

The CGMS Management Committee remained remarkably stable and largely unchanged throughout the years. The leadership team consisted of the following people from 2015 onwards, viz.–

  • Dr William Glasson, AO – President
  • Mr Ross Hielscher – Vice-President
  • Mr Peter Collins – Secretary and Online Curator
  • Mr Gordon Appleby – Treasurer
  • Mr Constantine Drozdovskii – Events Co-ordinator
  • The Reverend Canon Emeritus Bruce Maughan, OAM RFD GCSJ MMSJ MACE
  • Mr Robert Glazebrook
  • Mr David Murray
  • Ms Suzanne Bosanquet – Gabba Business Association Incorporated
  • Mr Darby AshtonNaval Association of Australia Incorporated (Sandgate Sub-Section)