Anzac Parade

Livingstone Shire Historical Markers

A Project of Capricorn Coast Historical Society & Livingstone Shire Council
Anzac Parade

The Historical Marker's planned location is located on Anzac Parade.

The Early Years

The present Anzac Parade at Yeppoon’s Main Beach originally consisted entirely of sand dunes.  There was no road, no foreshore recreational facilities and no direct beach access apart from crossing the dunes on foot. Yeppoon Hospital was located near Ross Creek at the far southern end of the esplanade. It was erected in 1917 as a convalescent home and commissioned as a hospital in 1922 but could only be accessed from central Yeppoon through sand dunes, along the beach or on a track through the mangroves.

During the 1920s there was a move to erect a memorial to “the sixty eight brave lads” who enlisted locally in the First World War.  At first a row of trees along the main street was suggested and the first planting took place in April 1920 with a public appeal for funds to finance name plates.  In 1928, the Yeppoon branch of the Returned Soldiers and Sailors Imperial League of Australia (forerunner of the RSL) offered £320 towards construction of a marine parade as a memorial and asked Council to subsidise the project.  Council agreed to assist and a committee was formed.  A proposal was prepared and costed the following year, with the R.S.S.I.L.A. providing £320, Council £380, with another £300 to be raised by public subscription via a Citizens’ Committee.

Importance to the Community

It was expected that construction would commence immediately and on 29 April 1929 the ceremony of turning the first sod by Shire Chairman Cr T Smith was performed.  Picnic areas, car-parking, shade trees and beautification were envisaged.  Preliminary work began in June but it soon became clear that there were numerous problems to be overcome: lack of machinery to level the site, insufficient funds to pay workers (this was the beginning of the Great Depression), and a shortfall in public donations. The problem of removing the sand was solved by selling it cheaply to locals who then had to remove it themselves.  A section of basic roadway was ready for use later that year and the official opening of the Anzac Memorial Parade took place on Boxing Day before “one of the largest crowds ever seen at Yeppoon”.

A row of memorial trees was planned alongside the Parade but beach erosion meant that a retaining wall needed to be built first to protect them. A tablet with soldiers’ and donors’ names met with a setback in 1931 when the Commercial Bank of Australia, which held the records, burned down and the list of donors was lost.  Work faltered during the 1930s due to lack of funds and the beach wall was not completed until 1939. Plaques were never installed. In 1940 the Anzac Day march was held along Anzac Parade.

The Later Years

The Parade was completed to Ross Creek about 1945 and over the years beach amenities have added to the appeal of the area. 

In July 1999, the Yeppoon War Memorial was entered on the Queensland State Heritage Register and according to the Queensland War Memorial Register it includes Anzac Parade and its avenues of trees.