Category Archives: General News

The Trench – NZ Army News

The Army News featured an article about our new The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience,  after editor Judith Martin visited The Great War Exhibition for a taste of Gallipoli.

Here is what Judith says about The Trench,

“The whiff of death, cordite and Galliploi vegetation swirls through the tight confines of the Quinn’s Post Trenches.”

“The Quinn’s Post Trench experience has been created by Sir Peter Jackson, and it shows. It is a combination of his genius ability at spinning yarns, but also encompasses his passion for First World War military history, and making the experiences of Great  War soldiers come alive.”

The article is below. This complete edition of NZ Army News is available here.  The Trench Experience  was created by Sir Peter Jackson and his WingNut Films team. To book The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience please click here.NZ Army News - The Trench

 

USA Embassy & Jack Rogo – Pearl Harbour

The American Embassy invite you to hear Jack Rogo speak at the Great War Exhibition on June 5th, from 6-7pm.

On the morning of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Jack Rogo, a 19 year old Navy Storekeeper 3rd Class, working in the Aviation Supply Department, was having breakfast in the mess. The building convulsed. Jack and his colleagues did not pay attention as the rumor was that the armory was on maneuvers, but some of the explosions were very loud, and they just couldn’t comprehend what was going on. After breakfast, he went onto the lanai to see what was happening and could not believe his eyes. There was no way to fight back. The ships were sinking and turning over.

Men were swimming to shore, if they could, and the dead and badly wounded were floating on the water. Jack volunteered to go out to pick up those wounded who could not make it to shore.

Everything was in such disarray that they shot down some of their own planes that evening. Engineers were needed to plan the uprighting of the sunken ships. Ford Island never became normal again.

Now 97, Jack is a celebrity in Los Angeles and visits local schools to recount the December 7, 1941 Japanese raid on Pearl Harbor and the other four years he and his fellow heroes served in the Pacific during World War II. Jack is a character and lives life to the fullest – he sky dived for the first time at 88 and had a Pearl Harbor tattoo he designed, etched on his arm when he was 96. He has an endearing and contagious nature and is an inspiration to everyone he meets.

Admission to this event is free.

Jack Rogo USA Embassy talk at Great War Exhibition

Behind The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience

Dan King, the project manager and art director behind The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience, spent 18 months on the job, ensuring The Trench was as authentic as possible, so visitors are able to experience what it was like to be in the dangerous trenches of Gallipoli in 1915.

Dan, a Carterton resident,  talks to reporter Steve Rendle of the Wairarapa Times Age  about his experiences, which involved shooting machine guns, weighing wet plaster (to conform to the building’s weight restrictions) and working with Sir Peter Jackson, whose attention to detail enabled the crew to “make this the closest thing to being there.”

For more about this exciting view behind the Quinn’s Post Trench Experience, see the full news article here.

To find out more about The Trench Experience, please click here. To make a booking for The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience, please click here.

Dan King - project manager and art director behind the Quinn's Post Trench Experience
Dan King in The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience, with replicas of boxes used at Gallipoli for explosives and biscuits.

 

 

Opening – Sir Peter Jackson’s Quinn’s Post Trench Experience

The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience officially opened in mid April and we’ve been swept off our feet with visitors keen to experience the sights, sounds and noises of the trenches in Gallipoli (courtesy of Sir Peter Jackson and his creative team at WingNut).

Now that we have a moment to catch our breath, we’d like to share some of our photos and media coverage of The Trench.

The Hon. Grant Robertosn, Peter Parussini (ANZ), Turkish Ambassador His Excellency Ahmet Ergin, The Hon. Ron Mark, Trustee Lt. Gen. (ret) Rhys Jones and Sir Peter Jackson in front of the exit from The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience.

 

Governor General, The Rt Hon Dame Patsy Reddy with Sir Peter Jackson
Chairperson of the National Military Heritage Trust, Dame Fran Wilde, with The Rt Hon Dame Patsy Reddy and Trustee Richard Austin.
His Worship Mayor Justin Lester with General Manager of The Great War Exhibition, Dave Clearwater.
Inside The Trench with actors Jed Brophy and Mark Hadlow, who sometimes undertook 21-hour shoots to capture the footage for The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience. The ‘ghost’ of Lt. Colonel Malone is commanding his troops in the background.
Mark and Jed explore The Trench.
Mark Mitchell of the New Zealand Herald captures footage in the close confines of The Trench.

News links are available here

Actors Jed Brophy and Darren Young join actor and photographer Dean O’Gorman, who has staged realistic new photographs of Passchendaele for his new exhibition Passchendaele – The Elusive Familiarity of War. This exhibition was installed on the day The Trench opened. For more info see this page.

Open 6:30am on ANZAC Day in Wellington

This ANZAC Day in Wellington, The Great War Exhibition will open at 6:30 a.m. to welcome visitors who have attended the 6 a.m. memorial service at Pukeahu National War Memorial Park, next door.

A full list of ANZAC memorial services is available at The Ministry of Culture and Heritage and the Wellington City Council.  After attending memorial services for our ANZAC troops, visitors are welcome to explore The Great War Exhibition at their leisure.

We have a variety of attractions with the Exhibition, including:

We welcome you to explore an important part of New Zealand’s history.

 

TV3, DomPost and NZ Herald in The Trench

The Quinn’s Post Trench Experience (a.k.a The Trench) opened on 14 April.

A world-first sensory experience created by Sir Peter Jackson’s team, The Trench gives us a glimpse of wartime life. Visitors have been flooding through the door to experience what our troops in Gallipoli lived through, back in 1915.

“It was mind blowing, so real.  A unique experience that gives me an idea of what our boys went through.”

— Mark, Whangarei

Live moment to moment, as the ANZAC troops did in the trenches at Gallipoli, only a bomb’s throw away from the Turks. In this unique re-creation of Quinn’s Post, encounter the noise, the explosions, the stench, the confined environment those men had to deal with during the ferocious struggle between opposing forces. At times confronting, this will be an experience like no other!

National media covered the opening. Please see Sir Peter Jackson’s interview on TV3, or the articles and videos at Stuff, and NZ Herald.

The Trench Experience may be booked as a stand-alone option, however, our combo deal is the best way to experience The Great War Exhibition and Quinn’s Post Trench Experience. Our combo includes admission, a 45-minute guided tour from one of our knowledgeable guides and the 30-minute sensory experience within The Trench.

The Quinn’s Post Trench sensory experience may not be suitable for all visitors.

Book a Tour or Find Out More

Driving First World War Ambulances

Deborah Pitts Taylor was ahead of her time. A woman who believed in female empowerment, she drove First World War ambulances in Brockenhurst, England, transporting convoys of wounded ANZAC soldiers to the hospital.

Her granddaughter Dr. Janet Frater and great-granddaughter Deborah Rose, (named after Deborah Pitts Taylor) recently visited The Great War Exhibition to see Women’s War, which highlights Deborah’s contribution to the war.

Janet lived with Deborah as a child, and says that Deborah’s determination to help in the war and do a “man’s job” has empowered her female ancestors. Janet grew up knowing women could do anything, and went on to study medicine at a time when she was one of only 12 women in her class of 60.

The New Zealand Herald interviewed Janet about her Deborah’s contribution to the First Word War, her influence on their family, and the ties they still nurture with the village of Brockenhurst. Please read their article here.

First World War ambulance
Deborah, who drove first world war ambulances, in Brockenhurst during the First World War. (Image courtesy of Auckland War Memorial Museum).

For more information about Women’s War, which closes in mid May, click here.

This stained glass window in St Nicholas church in Brockenhurst depicts the strong ties the Brockenhusrt community formed with New Zealand soldiers.

Women’s War – NZ Women’s Weekly, Cook Strait News & Regional News

This week’s New Zealand Women’s Weekly features a story about Susanna Montgomerie who is one of the co-editor’s of Annie’s War, which features extracts from the diary of Annie Montgomerie, Susanna’s grandmother who traveled to London to be near her sons when they served in the First World War.

Women's War in Women's WeeklyThe full New Zealand Women’s Weekly article is now available online: click here.

Woman’s War also featured in the Cook Strait News (below, page 3) and in the  Regional News (Front cover and page 3) here.

 

Women’s War was Annie’s War

Our new touring exhibition, Women’s War, draws upon the experiences of New Zealand Women who lived through the First World War, responding to the war as workers, supportive family members, patriots, nurses, entertainers or pioneers.

Annie Montgomerie had two sons, Oswald and Seton, who wanted to serve as pilots, which meant enlisting in Britain. She moved to London, keeping a diary of her experiences, and faced Zeppelin attacks and suffered in the influenza epidemic.

Her granddaughter Susanna Montgomerie Norris is a teacher and librarian with an interest in history, and knew Annie’s diaries were a treasure trove of information about life in the war. She spent five years with her husband, Michael, transcribing Annie’s experiences in war-torn London.

Excerpts of Annie’s dairies were published in Annie’s War (Otago University Press, edited by Anna Rogers and Susanna Montgomerie Norris) in 2014.

Annie's War Otago University Press

Briar Barry of Story Inc. (the creators of Women’s War) said, “We wanted the show to be about women, using women’s voices, so when our scriptwriter, Katie, found Annie’s War, we got in touch with Susanna about using quotes from Annie.”

One of the quotes in the show:

“Tuesday 12 June, 1917: Went off to Pall Mall. Got a table quite near one Princess Beatrice of Battenberg and her party sat at, and we had a good view of them all the time. She is no looker but a lot of her party were worse.”

Susanna enjoyed Women’s War. “I was very excited. It’s amazing what they’ve picked out. That quote about princess Beatrice was Granny all over. She could be quite brutal. She’d let fly with her opinions about the war and the generals and get everyone stirred up.”

Susanna says Annie felt for the young New Zealand soldiers so far away from home. “She gave each young soldier a kiss for their mother before they left.”

Ian Wards, Exhibitions Manager at The Great War Exhibition, says, “So much of this war story has been told through the eyes and ears of men, so it is great to acknowledge, see and hear the experiences of women in the war.”

Women’s War runs until 19 May 2018. More information about Women’s War is here. For information about Annie’s War, click here.

Annie Montgomerie of Annie's War, features in The Great War Exhibition's touring exhibition Women's War
Susanna Montgomerie Norris, Briar Barry (Story Inc.) and Susanna’s husband, Michael. Susanna is holding a copy of Annie’s War

Women’s War on TVNZ, Stuff & Radio NZ

Women’s War, our latest touring exhibition, opened last Friday and the response from national media has been positive.

Television New Zealand summarises the content of the exhibition:

“The Great War exhibition features clothing worn by the women of the era and is accompanied by short videos accounting their experiences using excerpts from their letters and diaries.”

The use of a dynamic audio-visual show brings these excerpts of diaries and letters to life.

 

Radio New Zealand explains the various roles covered by the exhibition:

“Women’s War gives voice to their experiences, utilising cutting-edge audio-visual technology and recreations of outfits that were worn by six types of women-patriotic, supportive family, nurses, entertainers, independent workers and pioneers.

“Fiona Baverstock, an Australian private collector of textiles and vintage clothing, who created the costumes, said women brought “a can-do” practicality to the war effort and fashion.”

The Dominion Post reports:

“Kiwi women rallied to face the challenges left by the absence of men but they were also alongside the troops, driving ambulances and tending to the wounded – experiencing the ghastly reality of war in a different way.”

View the Television New Zealand video clip here, read what Radio New Zealand reported here and read the Dominion Post Stuff article here.

Women’s War runs until 19 May 2018. For more information, click here.