Making sure we never forget

Asset Publisher

19 March 2024

Public school life

As 10 West Australian students prepare to head to Singapore for the 2024 Premier’s Anzac Student Tour, the opportunity to be a part of the 2025 travelling party has recently opened.

In April 2025, a group of 10 WA students, in Years 9 to 12, will accompany three teachers to Japan. 

You can find all the information about how to be in contention for that amazing 10-day tour through our website.

Next month, the group heading overseas will commemorate the 82nd anniversary of the fall of Singapore. 

The tour will give students the unique opportunity to follow the footsteps of the men and women who served in the armed forces in the Pacific region during World War II. 

The Kranji War Cemetery.

Students are selected to tour following a written submission and interview. Since 2004, 246 students have toured Belgium, England, France, Greece, Malaysia, Singapore, Turkey, Vietnam and around Australia to commemorate the service and sacrifice of Anzac service men and women. 

Tour coordinator, Karen Lamond, says this year’s tour participants will travel the width and breadth of Singapore, taking in important landmarks such as Changi Prison Chapel and Museum and Kranji War Cemetery. 

“The students will be learning about those who were killed in action, became prisoners of war in Changi, as well as learn about some of the POW camps, in Japan, Thailand and Borneo that they were then sent to,” she said. 

“Also, with the help of long-time tour supporters, the 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion Ex Members Association, and the State Library of Western Australia, they will follow the stories of some Australian soldiers who served in Singapore.” 

With this year’s departure date getting closer, the touring party recently got together to begin their learnings.   

Assisted by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, RSL WA, the 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion Ex Members’ Association, the Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia and the History Teachers’ Association of Western Australia. 

They got a small taste of what was to come through visits to Leighton Battery, the Army Museum of Western Australia, the State Library of Western Australia, Anzac Cottage and the State War Memorial. 

“We also had an enlightening visit from Adam Lea and Maisy the service dog,” Karen said. 

“Adam is ex SAS and we’re lucky now to have him teaching at Anzac Terrace Primary School.  

“He shared some amazing stories form his time in the service and also provided his thoughts on the importance of mental health awareness.”  

The 2/4th Machine Gun Battalion was formed with men from WA, who were assembled at a military camp in Northam from their initial training. The battalion was raised as a support unit for the 8th Division, that fell during fighting throughout the Asia-Pacific region, including Singapore. 

The machine-gunners suffered heavily during the fall of Singapore in 1942 and the battalion was then held in Japanese prisoner of war camps for the next three and a half years. 

The tour will also visit: 

  • Fort Siloso, on Sentosa Island, which is home to WWII memorabilia, including the largest collection of coastal guns in Singapore. 
  • Former Ford factory, where the British Army forces surrendered to Imperial Japanese Army forces on 15 February 1942 after the Battle of Singapore.    
  • The Battlebox, a former WWII British underground command centre inside Fort Canning Hill in the heart of Singapore City.  
  • Kranji War Memorial, where the group will conduct its own commemorative service here in lieu of Anzac Day. This was the final resting place for allied soldiers who died during the Battle of Singapore and the subsequent Japanese occupation of the island from 1942 to 1945 and in other parts of Southeast Asia during World War II.  

The 2024 Premier's Anzac Student Tour participants are: 

  • Caitlyn Willis, Year 8, Guildford Grammar School 
  • Avery Flint, Year 9, Applecross Senior High School 
  • Milla Lobik, Year 9, Applecross Senior High School 
  • Mazlyn Membry, Year 9, Manjimup Senior High School 
  • Tahlia Watson, Year 9, Geraldton Senior High School 
  • Aja Kondo-Morcom, Year 9, Mount Lawley Senior High School 
  • Keona Latiff, Year 9, Canning Vale College 
  • Freya Hicks, Year 10, Christmas Island District High School 
  • Tim Kania, Year 11, Aquinas College 
  • William Temby, Year 11, Margaret River Senior High School 

Keep an eye on our website for updates from the students while they are away. You can also find out more information about the Premier's Anzac Student Tour from our website.