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WW100 commemorations launched

First World War military service by students and former students of Canterbury Agricultural College (Lincoln's predecessor) is being remembered and honoured as part of the national and international WW100 commemoration activities marking the centenary of the start of the war in 1914.

On the Te Waihora (Lincoln) campus a ceremony was held on 4 August, the date of the declaration of hostilities in 1914. Organised by the Alumni and Development Office, the ceremony was centred on the unveiling of a large framed heritage photograph of the first group of students and old students who sailed for overseas service in 1914. As an initial WW100 project, the Alumni and Development Office is trying to trace and contact descendants of the eight soldiers in the photograph. 

All except Manning (pictured above) sailed from Lyttelton for Egypt with the Canterbury Infantry Battalion on 16 October 1914. Manning had to withdraw because of ill health but eventually went overseas in 1916.

Edridge, Manning, Musgrave and Stitt were also old students of Christ’s College. Barlow and Duncan were educated in India and Kember in Scotland, before coming to CAC. Edridge, Manning and Musgrave were from Christchurch, Stitt was originally from Ashburton and Wilde from Marton. Barlow, Kember and Manning were killed in France. Kember on the Somme in 1916; Barlow, then with the Royal Flying Corps, near the Somme in July 1918; and Manning at Bapaume in August 1918.

The campus WW100 ceremony was held in the Library. Assistant Vice-Chancellor, Communities, Professor Hirini Matunga represented the University and welcomed guests - while Major Ian Barrett of the NZ Defence Force and Roger Dawson of the Library staff unveiled the photograph, former Army and Air Force officer Bill Barnes of Lincoln, a Vietnam veteran and historian, spoke about the complex origins of the First World War, and retired staff member and World War Two veteran Vern Clark spoke about the impact of the First World War on the then College and its teaching staff, and on the residents of Lincoln township.

If any readers have information about the family connections of any of the student soldiers named above, please contact the Alumni & Development Office’s Heritage Writer