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Kings Park Memorials

The National Police Memorial

The National Police Memorial pays tribute to all Australian police officers killed on duty and those who have died as a result of their duties since the beginning of policing in Australia. The memorial is designed to encourage understanding and appreciation of policing, while allowing for individual officer's stories to be told and remembered.

The Memorial reminds us that the ultimate sacrifice is made by ordinary people demonstrating extraordinary qualities. The memorial acts as a symbol connecting police to the community and loved ones through interaction and reflection.

The Memorial is comprised of a bronze commemorative wall upon which the names of police officers who have made the ultimate sacrifice are placed and a large stone paved area with etched quotes. The undulating terrain reflects the uncertain path police tread in the performance of their duties.

The wall is punctured by 1 200 plaques, over 700 of which are engraved with information about deceased officers. The random placement of the plaques reflects the random nature of loss. Vacant plaques remind visitors future tragedy is inevitable.

Each plaque casts a shadow creating a random pattern on the wall and is individually back-lit, producing an effect similar to a candlelit vigil.

The National Police Memorial designed by Fairweather Proberts Architects with Urban Art.

The National Police Memorial is located in Kings Park, near the National Carillon. Access is from Wendouree Drive, from Constitution Ave or from Kings Ave (northbound).

The National Emergency Services Memorial

The National Emergency Services Memorial was dedicated in honour of the thousands of men and women who serve or have served in Australia's emergency services. The memorial provides a place to reflect on those who have been injured or died while carrying out their duties for the benefit of the Australian community.

The design of the memorial draws on the history of many tragic events, recalling images of grass fire at night, lightning flashes and the shadows of one's body cast by strong sunlight or fire.

The wall of the memorial also gives the visitor a sense of safety, like that provided by Emergency Services personnel. The raised wall curves up in an expression of comfort, to reflect the warmth of the sun and give shelter from the wind.

A three-dimensional frieze portrays emergency service personnel and their services to the community and environment. It is a visual expression of the motto of Emergency Management Australia: 'Prevent, Prepare, Respond, Recover'. The varied level and scale of detail on the surface allows the images to be read at different distances, allowing images to appear depending on the position of the viewer and the light and shadow on the textured surface.

Access to the National Emergency Services Memorial is by path from both the Rond Terraces car park and the cycle path along Lake Burley Griffin. The memorial was designed by Melbourne landscape architects, Aspect Melbourne Pty Ltd.

Merchant Navy Memorial

The Merchant Navy Memorial commemorates the contribution made by the Australian merchant navy during both World Wars.

The Australian Merchant Navy Seamen's Memorial at the Australian War Memorial lists the names of 182 merchant seamen who lost their lives in World War I. During World War II, 29 Australian merchant ships and 386 merchant seamen were lost in Australian waters.

The design of the memorial includes a globe spinning on a north-south axis. The central panel at the rear of the memorial contains the badge of the merchant navy and is flanked on both sides by six panels, representing ships' bows; the curved tops represent the waves of the sea. The pattern on the paving represents the various camouflage patterns used by merchant ships during World War I and the red crosses, the merchant navy-crewed hospital ships. The two concrete and glass drums at the extreme front flanks of the memorial represent navigational compass cards.

The Merchant Navy Memorial was designed by Daryl Jackson Alastair Swayn Pty Ltd architects and built from funds collected by the Merchant Navy War Memorial Fund Limited. It is located located at the edge of Lake Burley Griffin because of its association with water.

HMAS Canberra Memorial

The HMAS Canberra Memorial commemorates both the ship, HMAS Canberra, and those who served on her. Built in Scotland in 1927, the Canberra was a Kent Class heavy cruiser, commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy in 1928.

During World War II the Canberra served in both the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. It escorted Australian troops to Singapore in 1942 and in May of that year took part in the Battle of the Coral Sea, providing support for United States Marines at Guadalcanal. On 9 August 1942, at the Battle of Savo Island, the Allied fleet was surprised by a Japanese fleet. The Canberra was hit 24 times within less than two minutes - 84 seamen were lost.

The order to abandon ship was given the next day and the crippled Canberra was sunk by a torpedo from a United States ship. As a mark of respect, the United States renamed one of its ships, then under construction, the USS Canberra.

The memorial is comprised of two components: the bow of the ship and five-tonne anchor and chain typical of those carried on the Canberra. It is located at the edge of Lake Burley Griffin because of the association with water.

The HMAS Canberra Memorial and the Merchant Navy Memorial are located on the northern shore of Lake Burley Griffin, near Aspen Island. Access is from Wendouree Drive, off Constitution Avenue or from Kings Ave (northbound).

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