The Mosman Park Memorial Park was established on 25 August 1934 to commemorate the local people who served in World War One. Originally called the Buckland Hill Memorial Park, the park is located on Palmerston Street, Mosman Park, in Western Australia.
According to the Western Australian Government, Heritage Council, there is a long history of tree planting on the site: in 1905 trees were planted, and in 1934-5 the park was developed as a Soldiers’ Memorial Park, with Norfolk Island Pines (Araucaria heterophylla) planted by families of servicemen killed in WWI, accompanied by the erection of gates at western and northern entrances.
Read The West Australian newspaper article about the official tree planting ceremony on the National Library website
The Memorial Park which is located between Palmerston Street and Bay View Terrace Mosman Park was dedicated in 1931, in a ceremony addressed by Lieutenant General Sir Joseph Talbot Hobbs. [He was the highest ranked soldier from Western Australia in World War 1]. Sir Joseph Talbot Hobbs served in Gallipoli and the Western Front. He took over command of Australian Forces from General Sir John Monash after the Armistice was signed in 1918. He was also a leading Perth architect and designed war memorials in Europe and The Western Australia War Memorial in Kings Park.
The responsibility for development of Memorial Park was given to the Cottesloe Beach RSL sub branch [later to become Buckland Hill in 1933 and then Mosman Park in 1938]. The RSL raised funds for park development by a jumble sale which raised thirty pounds, and profit from a sale of work by the ladies committee at the local town hall. In July 1932 50 trees were planted in the park.
In 1934 the RSL handed over responsibility for Memorial Park to a Park Committee with representatives from the Buckland Hill Road Board [including its senior gardener], RSL, and the Horticultural Society .The committee accepted a design for Memorial Park which included: An Avenue of Honour consisting of 24 Norfolk Island Pines, leading up to a Court of Honour looking over the beautiful Swan River.
A Memorial Park ladies committee was formed to raise funds for the park development. Activities included a fancy dress ball [Ten pounds profit], sports meeting, film nights and donations from individuals and local private church schools.
On 25 August 1934 [Arbour Day] several hundreds of people gathered at Memorial Park for ceremony to plant Norfolk Island Pines to create an Avenue of Honour. The pine seedlings which cost three shillings each had been nurtured at the nearby home of local dentist Len Glaskin.
His wife Shirley planted a pine in memory of her brother Private Victor Cook, 51st Battalion who lost his life in France in 1916.
In August 1935 decorative iron gates set in limestone pillars donated by Len Glaskin and his father in law Frank Cook were opened. They are located at the northern entrance to Memorial Park
The first pine was planted by Lieutenant General Sir Joseph Talbot Hobbs in memory of the fallen from the Australian Field Artillery. He said: “There was no surer guarantee of peace than the preservation of war memorials”. The other pines were planted by persons in memory of individuals known to them or relatives of the planter, some in memory of units or comrades, and some in memory of those who were members of their organisation such as Westralia Lodge [Click here for list].
On 27 April 1935 decorative iron gates set in limestone pillars donated by the Park Ladies Committee were officially opened by Lieutenant General Sir Joseph Talbot Hobbs. They are located at the Palmerston entrance to the park at the start to the Avenue of Honour [Adjacent to the tree planted by Sir Joseph Talbot Hobbs].