ANZAC Day 2015 is over, and was a very moving experience for everyone who was lucky enough to attend the event. But that’s not the end of the events to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the Gallipoli Campaign. The Australian government will be holding a special service at Lone Pine Australian Memorial on 6 August 2015 for the 100th anniversary of ‘The Battle of Lone Pine’. No ballot will be held for attendance at this event.
The August offensive saw the heaviest fighting of the Gallipoli campaign in 1915. Ever since the landings at Gallipoli on 25 April, there had been a stalemate in the campaign. It was one last attempt to break out of the deadlock that the campaign had fallen into. An integral part of the August offensive was an attack on heavily fortified Turkish trenches at an area known as ‘Lone Pine’. The plan was quite a complex one – several diversionary attacks would be made along the ANZAC frontline in order to try and capture high points along the Sari Bair range, and during all of this, a new British landing would take place at Suvla Bay.
It became known as ‘The Battle of Lone Pine’. The Turkish positions were considered ‘untenable’, impossible to capture but the attack was considered necessary to draw any Turkish reserves in the vicinity down onto Lone Pine and away from the key objective, a set of hills, known as ‘the heights’. During just 4 days of fighting, Australia lost more than 2000 troops. Turkish losses were estimated to be approximately 6,900 troops.
The August offensive began with a diversionary attack at Lone Pine on 6 August 1915 which resulted in the successful taking of a complex of Turkish trenches. Another round of smaller attacks including one on ‘the Nek’, were made on the morning of 7 August, also resulting in a high number of casualties. The attack on the Nek, which resulted in the death of 375 of the 600 attackers was the subject of the film Gallipoli. Heavy fighting occurred over the next few days as the Turkish troops fought hard to take back their positions.
The August offensive was not a success for the Allieds due to the difficult terrain, an overly complex plan, and fatigued troops. The Turkish troops regained control of the peaks, and the Allieds suffered huge casualties. The sites of this epic battle – Lone Pine, the Nek, Chunuk Bair, Hill 60 and Suvla Bay are now well-known names in Australia.
Fez Travel is offering 3 August Offensive Tours – 9 days, 11 days and 16 days. We are also offering an 8 Day Battlefields Tour departing once a month from May to October, which explore the Battlefields in depth over a period of 3 days.