Glory restored to Sydney Technical High School's honour board of fallen soldiers

RSL Sub-Branch members attend the school's ceremony.
RSL Sub-Branch members attend the school's ceremony.

Sydney Technical High School commemorated its World War I honour board recently, bringing new life to historic memories that now shine with pride.

It was 1914 when Australian soliders responded with great enthusiasm to the call to arms by England.

When they died in battle, solidiers were to one day be remembered, so the high school at Bexley constructed memorials to honour those who fought.

In 1962 when the honour board was more than a century old, with cracked timber and faded names at its fore, project restoration was put to action.

There were also several omissions on the board, whereby the names of 71 former students and 11 teachers were not originally listed, among other inaccuracies.

Funding for the restoration was made possible thanks to a grant of more than $12,000.

Students provided valuable research, and constructed their projects for publication on the RSL Virtual War Memorial website, to be viewed and read by the public – including families of the soldiers.

So far the school has published 30 biographies of old boys and teachers from the honour board on the website, with more to come.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian at the unveiling of the honour board.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian at the unveiling of the honour board.

History teacher Robert Devlin and former student Ken Stevenson (class of 1962) worked with local MPs who supported the project.

“The new honour board has been beautifully fashioned to resemble the original board of 1917,” head of history, Robert Devlin, said.

“The names of 351 soldiers are engraved in gilded gold.

“Over the last two years I have worked closely with Ken on this project. This is very important to our collective memory.

“The project was a whole school and community endeavor that brought together many gifted and talented people in a common cause of restoring our past.

“It allowed students time to add depth and breadth to their historical knowledge and understanding of the impact of the war on an individual and their communities.”