Avenues in the Geelong area

John Stoward has been a member of Geelong RSL Sub Branch for a number of years and is very interested in attempting to uncover details of Avenues of Honour in the Greater Geelong region of Victoria. In particular John is  attempting to research 21 locations in the region listed in Sarah Cockerell’s 2006 survey. What he discovers with your help will no doubt lead us to a better understanding of what we have lost over the years so that restorations and replacements can be planned.

The Avenues of interest are as follows and shown in the map below.

Bacchus Marsh
Geelong North
North Geelong
Rokewood Junction
Waurn Ponds

View larger map

John believes that the Geelong North and the two North Geelong Avenues are two only – one being for Korean vets and the other for Vietnam.

Knowing the Modewarre district pretty well, he would be surprised if there are separate avenues for both Moriac and Modewarre.  The original Avenue of Honour was made up of elms, and was planted on June 28, 1918 – nearly five months before the end of the war.  The trees were placed with the existing stand of Golden Monterey Cypress trees in the mid 1940s.

On April 30th 2013 The  Surf Coast Times newspaper reported John’s request for assistance in researching this Avenue as follows:


In the wake of ANZAC Day, the community has been asked to help identify the soldiers recognised along Modewarre’s Avenue of Honour.  The 31 trees on Cape Otway Road were planted to honour the 31 soldiers who served in World War 1.

Two other trees in the avenue are for General William Birdwood, who commanded the ANZAC forces at Gallipoli and Modewarre resident Albert Jacka, who won the Victoria Cross at Gallipoli.  The avenue is the only surviving intact Avenue of Honour in Surf Coast Shire and is one of only a few in good condition in the region.

The Modewarre Hall and Reserve Committee of Management and Winchelsea Lions Club are working together on a project to place a memorial plaque beside each of the 31 trees, containing the soldier’s name, rank, regiment and identification tag number.

Following research involving RSL groups, the Australian War Memorial and discussions with locals, detailed information has been uncovered for only 11 of the 33 soldiers.

A name has been found for each soldier, but no record was ever made that listed other information.

Official records have identified up to 30 soldiers with the same name, and the project has asked for the public’s help in identifying the soldiers.

The names are:

Jack Beckman
Ernie E. Black
Sid Black
W. Clark
C. Cutts
Godfrey Deppeler
Jack Deppeler
Victor Hamilton
C. Harris
E. E. Hendy
R. Hunt
R. L. Hunter
Tom Hunter
William A. Kelly
J. W. Matthews
W. McAdam
H. Purcell
F. Robinson
G. Simpson
A. Jim Stewart
Jack C. Wallis
Norman L. Woods

If you think you can help please email John.