The AIF Project

Sydney Murray DUNBAR

Regimental number545
Place of birthThebarton, South Australia
SchoolPublic School, Thebarton, South Australia
ReligionMethodist
OccupationFireman
AddressMarion, South Australia
Marital statusMarried
Age at embarkation26
Height5' 11.5"
Weight157 lbs
Next of kinWife, Mrs Daisy Mary Dunbar, Marion, South Australia
Previous military serviceNil
Enlistment date28 January 1915
Place of enlistmentKeswick, South Australia
Rank on enlistmentPrivate
Unit name27th Battalion, C Company
AWM Embarkation Roll number23/44/1
Embarkation detailsUnit embarked from Adelaide, South Australia, on board HMAT A2 Geelong on 31 May 1915
Rank from Nominal RollPrivate
Unit from Nominal Roll27th Battalion
FateKilled in Action 4 August 1916
Place of death or woundingPozieres, France
Age at death27
Place of burialNo known grave
Commemoration detailsAustralian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux, France

Villers-Bretonneux is a village about 15 km east of Amiens. The Memorial stands on the high ground ('Hill 104') behind the Villers-Bretonneux Military Cemetery, Fouilloy, which is about 2 km north of Villers-Bretonneux on the east side of the road to Fouilloy.

The Australian National Memorial, Villers-Bretonneux is approached through the Military Cemetery, at the end of which is an open grass lawn which leads into a three-sided court. The two pavilions on the left and right are linked by the north and south walls to the back (east) wall, from which rises the focal point of the Memorial, a 105 foot tall tower, of fine ashlar. A staircase leads to an observation platform, 64 feet above the ground, from which further staircases lead to an observation room. This room contains a circular stone tablet with bronze pointers indicating the Somme villages whose names have become synonymous with battles of the Great War; other battle fields in France and Belgium in which Australians fought; and far beyond, Gallipoli and Canberra.

On the three walls, which are faced with Portland stone, are the names of 10,885 Australians who were killed in France and who have no known grave. The 'blocking course' above them bears the names of the Australian Battle Honours.

After the war an appeal in Australia raised £22,700, of which £12,500 came from Victorian school children, with the request that the majority of the funds be used to build a new school in Villers-Bretonneux. The boys' school opened in May 1927, and contains an inscription stating that the school was the gift of Victorian schoolchildren, twelve hundred of whose fathers are buried in the Villers-Bretonneux cemetery, with the names of many more recorded on the Memorial. Villers-Bretonneux is now twinned with Robinvale, Victoria, which has in its main square a memorial to the links between the two towns.

Panel number, Roll of Honour,
  Australian War Memorial
110
Other details

War service: Egypt, Gallipoli, Western Front

Embarked Alexandria to join the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force, Gallipoli, 4 September 1915.

Disembarked Alexandria from Mudros, 10 January 1916 (general Gallipoli evacuation).

Admitted to No 1 NZ Field Ambulance, Moascar, 7 March 1916 (inflamed gland, neck), and transferred to NZ Auxiliary Hospital (venereal disease: hard chancre; to Australian Dermatological Hospital, Abbassia, 16 March 1916; discharged to duty, 4 April 1916.

Embarked Alexandria to join the British Expeditionary Force, 20 May 1916; disembarked Marseilles, France, 26 May 1916.

Rejoined unit, in the field, 1 July 1916.

Found guilty, 21 July 1916, of drunkenness, 19 July 1916: awarded forfeiture of 1 day's pay.

Killed in action, 4 August 1916.

Medals: 1914-15 Star, British War Medal, Victory Medal
Miscellaneous detailsSurname incorrectly entered on Embarkation Roll as DINBAR.
SourcesNAA: B2455, DUNBAR Sydney Murray

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