Today was the opening day of the much anticipated Newcastle Memorial Walk built to commemorate the ANZAC centenary and the commencement of steel making in Newcastle.
Like many other families, we made our way to Strzelecki Lookout to experience the Memorial Walk which runs from the clifftop towards Bar Beach.
It’s a powerful commemoration to local soldiers who fought in the First World War.
The walk features steel silhouettes of ANZAC soldiers engraved with 3,860 family names of almost 11,000 known Newcastle and Hunter Valley men and women who enlisted during World War I.
It was touching to see people looking for their relatives’ names on the listing of those who served and leaving flowers behind.
The 450 meter cliff top walkway also features history panels with information about different aspects of the conflict as well as listing the geographic place names of various conflicts.
And of course I have to mention the magnificent views. From the walkway, there are 360 degree views of Newcastle from the coast to city. The views towards Bar Beach, Merewether and beyond are simply divine and reminded me how beautiful our coastline is.
Built with 64 tonnes of stainless steel and costing $4.5 million, the walkway is a spectacular addition to the Newcastle coastline and I‘m sure will be very popular with locals and visitors alike. Thanks to BHP Billiton and Newcastle Council for contributing $3 million and $1.5million respectively.
It features incredible 360 degree views of Newcastle from the coast to city.
The walk will be open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as the path is lit during the evenings. (Just be aware of your personal safety after dark).
The walk is also pram and wheelchair accessible from the Strzelecki Lookout section enabling you to travel all the way to the viewing platform before looping back.
If you don’t have to loop back, you can go down the series of clifftop steps linking it to the Bather’s Way.
Interestingly, the Memorial Walk also whistles. One of my readers Heidi mentioned that her mum lives nearby and has noticed on windy days, the walkway hums and whistles. Her mum beautifully describes it as the ”Spirit of the Anzacs”. Very fitting tribute indeed.
After I published this post, I was contacted by local company media Out of the Square Media who informed me that they put together a video of the first Anzac Day of the Memorial Walk. It’s an amazing video that I just had to share.