Below is a list of our Future Events. These events recognise our history and form an important part of our role as an Association and with your support, these events can only strengthen our esprit de corps
14 February 2023 – National Service Day
National Service Day honours those who have served our nation through compulsory military service.
Australia has seen four periods of compulsory military service, with the last two schemes, 1951–1959 and 1964–1972, seeing tens of thousands of National Servicemen, or ‘Nashos’ serve our nation. Under the National Service Act 1951, all young men turning 18 on or after 1 November 1950 were required to register for the scheme. For those who went into the Navy or Air Force, this meant a commitment of 176 days standard recruit training. For the majority, who went into the Army, it meant a period of 98 days in the Regular Army followed by 78 days in the Citizen Military Forces.
National Servicemen were then required to remain in the Reserve for five years.More than 33,000 men trained annually in the Army, Navy or Air Force during the period 1951–1957, after which the yearly intake fell to 12,000 before the scheme was discontinued in 1959. The last National Service Scheme was introduced in 1964 in response to Australia’s growing involvement in South East Asia. From 1964 to 1972, men aged 20 years or older were required to register with the Department of Labour and National Service. A draw, known as the ‘birthday ballot’ then determined which men would be called up for service. More than 804,000 men registered during the period 1964–72, of whom more than 63,000 were called up to serve in the Army.The National Service scheme ended in December 1972 following the withdrawal of troops from Vietnam.
Photo; Vietnam. 1967.
Australian Army engineers work on a new bridge near the Task Force base. The original bridge was sabotaged by the Viet Cong. It had been rebuilt previously by French forces, but was repeatedly destroyed by the Viet Cong. The Australian built bridge, strengthened to take the weight of armour, was constructed right over the foundations of the former structures.
19 February 2023 – Bombing of Darwin Day
The Bombing of Darwin, also known as the Battle of Darwin,on 19 February 1942 was the largest single attack ever mounted by a foreign power on Australia. On that day, 242 Japanese aircraft, in two separate raids, attacked the town, ships in Darwin’s harbour and the town’s two airfields in an attempt to prevent the Allies from using them as bases to contest the invasion of Timor and Java during World War II.
25 February 2023 – Annual Sapper Muster
28 February 2023 – 32nd Anniversary of the end of Gulf War Air Campaign (Operation Desert Storm)
From 2 Aug 1990 – 28 Feb 1991, the Gulf War was a war waged by coalition forces from 35 nations led by the United States against Iraq in response to Iraq’s invasion and annexation of Kuwait arising from oil pricing and production disputes.
1 March 2023 – 122nd Anniversary of the Australian Army and Royal Australian Navy
6 April 2023 – 82nd Anniversary of the Greek Campaign
The Battle of Greece is the common name for the invasion of Allied Greece by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany in April 1941 during World War II. The Italian invasion in October 1940, which is usually known as the Greco-Italian War, was followed by the German invasion in April 1941The defence of Greece was placed largely in the hands of troops from Australia and New Zealand. During the course of the campaign this dominion force, although it included a British brigade, became known as the ANZAC Corps. Even before the German invasion, senior British military and political figures doubted the wisdom of attempting to fight the Germans in Greece and some were already discussing evacuation plans. Lacking aircraft and armour, the Allies were poorly prepared to withstand the German onslaught which came in the form of ten infantry, armoured and specialist mountain warfare divisions. Outnumbered on the ground and in the air the British Commonwealth force was unable to deploy sufficient troops in any one area to halt the German advance. Instead they found themselves conducting a series of withdrawals, slowing the Germans down and offering brave and sometimes successful local resistance
11 April 2023 – 82nd Anniversary of start of the Siege of Tobruk
The Siege of Tobruk lasted for 241 days in 1941, after Axis forces advanced through Cyrenaica from El Agheila in Operation Sonnenblume against Allied forces in Libya, during the Western Desert Campaign of the Second World War.
24 April 2023 – Kapyong Day (Korean War)
The Battle of Kapyong, also known as the Battle of Jiaping, was fought during the Korean War between United Nations Command forces—primarily Canadian, Australian, and New Zealand—and the Chinese People’s Volunteer Army
25 April 2023 – ANZAC DAY
4 May 2023 – 56th Anniversary of the arrival of the 1st Australian Task Force at Vung Tau, Vietnam
The 1st Australian Task Force (1ATF) base in Phuoc Tuy Province as viewed from the south. 1ATF established the base in May 1966 and handed it over to the Army of the Republic of Vietnam in November 1971 as 1ATF withdrew from South Vietnam. The base was some eight km north east of the provincial capital Baria and 27 km north east of the port of Vung Tau, the location of the 1st Australian Logistic Support Group (1ALSG). The dominating feature of the base was the hill named Nui Dat (in Vietnamese meaning mountain or hill of soil) between the airstrip to its north (Luscombe Field) and the smaller helicopter landing zone (LZ) Kangaroo Pad to its south.
5 May 2023 – Battle of the Coral Sea Day
The Battle of the Coral Sea, from 4 to 8 May 1942, was a major naval battle between the Imperial Japanese Navy and naval and air forces of the United States and Australia.
8 May 2023 – Victory in Europe (VE) Day
Victory in Europe Day is the day celebrating the formal acceptance by the Allies of World War II of Germany’s unconditional surrender of its armed forces on Tuesday, 8 May 1945, marking the end of World War II in Europe.
21 May 2023 – 78th Anniversary of the Kapooka Tragedy
t was May 21 and 24 trainee sappers were learning to make small, handheld explosives in a bunker on the base, under the supervision of 2 Royal Australian Engineers Training Centre staff. Just before 3:00pm there was an explosion in the bunker.
The funeral for the 26 men, two days after the accident, brought Wagga Wagga to a standstill, as a procession of four semitrailers carried the coffins of the soldiers through the city’s streets. Approximately half the town’s population, about 7,000 people, lined the main road to watch.
29 May 2023 – International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers
The “International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers”, May 29, is “an international day to pay tribute to all the men and women who have served and continue to serve in United Nations peacekeeping
6 June 2023 – 79th Anniversary of the D-Day Landings
The Normandy landings were the landing operations and associated airborne operations on Tuesday, 6 June 1944 of the Allied invasion of Normandy in Operation Overlord during World War II. Codenamed Operation Neptune and often referred to as D-Day, it was the largest seaborne invasion in history.
6 June 2023 – 52nd Anniversary of the Battle of Long Khanh
The Battle of Long Khanh was fought during the Vietnam War between elements of 1st Australian Task Force and the Viet Cong and People’s Army of Vietnam during Operation Overlord.
7 June 2023 – 106th Anniversary of mining Hill 60, Ypres
The 1st Australian Tunnelling Company was one of the tunnelling companies of the Royal Australian Engineers during World War I. The tunnelling units were occupied in offensive and defensive mining involving the placing and maintaining of mines under enemy lines, as well as other underground work such as the construction of deep dugouts for troop accommodation, the digging of subways, saps (narrow trenches dug to approach enemy trenches), cable trenches, and underground chambers for signals and medical services.
The 1st Australian Tunnelling Company took over the mines at Hill 60 in November 1916, led in part by Captain Oliver Woodward and they maintained the mines over the winter. The mines placed under the German lines and were charged with explosives. At 3:10 a.m. on 7 June 1917, the first mine (Hill 60) contained 53,000 pounds (24,000 kg) of ammonal explosive and the second (The Caterpillar) containing 70,000 pounds (32,000 kg). were detonated under the German lines. The blasts created one of the largest explosions in history, reportedly heard in London and Dublin, demolishing a large part of the hill and killing c. 10,000 German soldiers. It is estimated that altogether approximately thirty Australian tunnellers of the Royal Australian Engineers were killed at Hill 60.
26 June 2023 – 108th Anniversary of the Waterloo Dinner – 99th Anniversary of the first held in Melbourne, Australia
The Story of the Waterloo Dinner
On 18th June 1915 at Gallipoli there was a daily gathering of sapper “Brass” for ”elevenses” or “coffee house” in the dugout of the AA and QMG 1 Aust Div, LTCOL C.J. Foott RAE, MAJ H.L.Macworth RE, OC 1 Aust Div Sig Coy brought to their notice the completion of the pier by LT Stan Watson RAE.
LTCOL Foott called attention to the fact that 18th June was the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 and suggested that a dinner be held in his dugout that evening to celebrate both the Waterloo Anniversary and the pier completion – the first Waterloo Dinner. It was attended by six RAE officers, six RE officers and one non-sapper officer. It was not until 1924 that the first known Waterloo Dinner was held in Australia. The dinner was held at Victoria Barracks in Melbourne and had over 70 officers attending. COL Foott was at that time on the QMG Branch Staff. In early 1925 COL Foot was appointed as Director of Engineers and he encouraged the other states to hold a similar dinner in future years.
1 July 2023 – 121st Birthday of the RAE Corps(Raised 1 July 1902) Ubique
1 July 1902 saw the amalgamation of 5 of the Australian colonies independent Engineers to form the Corps of Engineers. At this time, the Corps consisted of field, fortress, telegraph, electric and submarine mining companies.
4 July 2023 – 105th Anniversary of the Battle of Hamel
The Battle of Hamel was a successful attack by Australian Army and US Army infantry, supported by British tanks, against German positions in and around the town of Le Hamel, in northern France, during World War I.
17 July 2023 – 129th Anniversary of the Victorian Engineers moving to the Alexander Avenue Barracks, 1894
19 July 2023 – 107th Anniversary of the Battle of Fromelles
The Attack at Fromelles 19–20 July 1916, was a military operation on the Western Front during the First World War. The attack was carried out by British and Australian troops and was subsidiary to the Battle of the Somme
23 July 2023 – 107th Anniversary of the Battle of Pozieres
The Battle of Pozières took place in northern France around the village of Pozières, during the Battle of the Somme. The costly fighting ended with the British in possession of the plateau north and east of the village, in a position to menace the German bastion of Thiepval from the rear.
27 July 2023 – Korea Veterans’ Day
Korea Veteran’s Day is commemorated on Monday 27 July – a day set aside annually to remember the contribution made by Australian forces to what is commonly referred to as ‘the forgotten war’. A war in which some 17,000 Australians served, where more than 330 lost their lives and from which 1,500 returned to Australia wounded.The Korean War commenced on 25 June, 1950 when troops from the Soviet backed North Korean Army crossed the 38th parallel to begin a civil war with the South. Australia’s involvement was significant. Our nation formed part of the United Nations (UN) forces, defending South Korea against the combined North Korean and Chinese forces.The Australian government under Menzies called for 1000 men who had prior military experience in World War II to enlist in the army. These men were known as the Korean Force or K-Force.
6 August 2023 – 108th Anniversary of the Battle of Lone Pine
The Battle of Lone Pine was fought between Australian and New Zealand Army Corps and Ottoman Empire forces during the Gallipoli Campaign of the First World War, between 6 and 10 August 1915.
15 August 2023 – 78th Anniversary of Victory in the Pacific (VP) Day
Victory over Japan Day is the day on which Imperial Japan surrendered in World War II, in effect bringing the war to an end.
18 August 2023 – Vietnam Veterans Day
On 18 August, we commemorate Vietnam Veterans‘ Day on the anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan in 1966. We remember the sacrifices of those who died and say thank you to almost 60,000 Australians who served during the 10 years of our involvement in the Vietnam War.
18 August 2023 – 57th Anniversary of the Battle of Long Tan
The Battle of Long Tan took place in a rubber plantation near Long Tân, in Phước Tuy Province, South Vietnam, during the Vietnam War. The action was fought between Viet Cong and People’s Army of Vietnam units and elements of the 1st Australian Task Force.
31 August 2023 – Malaya & Borneo Veterans’ Day
Each year on 31 August, Australia commemorates Malaya and Borneo Veterans‘ Day. It’s the day we reflect on the service and sacrifice of all Australian military personnel who served in the Malayan Emergency and the Indonesian Confrontation.
1 September 2023 – Battle for Australia Day
Every year on the first Wednesday of September, we commemorate the Battle for Australia. We reflect on the bravery of those who served on Australia’s home front, and the islands, the seas and in the skies to the north. It’s an important reminder of a challenging time for Australians between 1942 and 1945
3 September 2023 – Merchant Navy Day
Merchant Navy Day is commemorated each year on September 3. This is the anniversary of the first Allied merchant ship being sunk during World War 2. Veterans lay poppies on the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior. By the end of the war 33,730 Commonwealth merchant seafarers had lost their lives.
14 September 2023 – Australian Peacekeeping Day
On 14 September each year, we remember and thank those Australian Defence Force personnel, civilians and police forces who have served on international peacekeeping operations. More than 65,000 Australians have served on more than 50 multi-national missions, including members of the Australian police services, helping countries devastated by war, maintaining peace during an election or providing humanitarian aid. Our nation’s first peacekeeping mission was as part of a United Nations (UN) operation in the Dutch East Indies (present day Indonesia) between 1947 and 1951 — one of the first UN sanctioned groups of military observers’. In our region, Australia has led, or taken a leading role in, the multinational Peace Monitoring Group in Bougainville (1998–2003), INTERFET in East Timor (1999–2000), and the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (2003–2017). Sadly, 16 Australians have died while serving as peacekeepers in an effort to make the world a safer place.
3 October 2023 – 72nd Anniversary of the Battle for Maryang San, Korea
The First Battle of Maryang-san 3 – 8 October 1951, also known as the Defensive Battle of Maliangshan, was fought during the Korean War between United Nations Command forces—primarily Australian and British—and the Chinese People’s Volunteer Army
October 2023 – Sir John Holland Golf Day
The Evans-Zoller Trophy is played for by RAE and allied forces’ officers, the competition rules were amended for RAE and allied officer’s (described as eligible players in the attached brief) to invite a partner. Where there are Sappers /NCO’s/WO wishing to play the ‘organisers’ will match them up with an eligible player.
20 October 2023 – 22nd Anniversary of Australian Special Forces departing for Operation Slipper (Afghanistan)
The Australian contribution to the war in Afghanistan has been known as Operation Slipper and Operation Highroad. Australian Defence Force operations and the size of the forces deployed have varied and ADF involvement has included two major areas of activity: Afghanistan and the Persian Gulf
October 2023 – 22 Construction Regiment Annual Reunion
11 November 2023 – Remembrance Day Services – Ringwood RSL & Repatriation Hospital
15 November 2023 – 163rd Birthday of the Corps of Volunteer Victorian Engineers
November 2023 – Sir Clive Steele Lecture
Major General Sir Clive Selwyn Steele, KBE, DSO, MC, VD (30 September 1892 – 5 August 1955) was an engineer and a senior officer of the Australian Army who served in both the First and Second World Wars. He was instrumental in the expansion of the Royal Australian Engineers (RAE) in preparation for the war against Japan.
November 2023 – 22 ER Parade
4 December 2023 – St Barbara’s Day
ST BARBARA is considered by many across the world as the Patron Saint of Gunners, and anyone whose work is with cannon and explosives.
St Barbara’s protection is invoked against thunder and lightning, and all accidents arising from fire and explo-sives, because of the story of the divine lightning that struck down her father, who carried out her execution because of her Christian beliefs.
In Greek and Roman calendars, the Feast of Saint Barbara falls on December 4.
5 December 2023 – 51st Anniversary of the abolishment of the National Service Scheme
7 December 2023 – 82nd Anniversary of the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor
The Attack on Pearl Harbor was a surprise military strike by the Imperial Japanese Navy Air Service upon the United States against the naval base at Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii, just before 08:00, on Sunday morning, December 7, 1941.
December 2023 – Christmas Nibbles, Croydon RSL
End of year get together. Open to all members, friends and partners.