The plight of Australian prisoners of war will be commemorated next week at a special screening of the powerful film The Railway Man.MONIQUE FREER March 12, 2014 9:22am
Time to reflect: Benalla RSL appeals officer Alan Ould, Benalla RSL life member Norman Davis, State Member for Benalla Bill Sykes, Benalla RSL president Jeff Lewis and Benalla RSL member Max Wright at the ‘Weary’ Dunlop memorial.
The plight of Australian prisoners of war will be commemorated next week at a special screening of the powerful film The Railway Man.
State Member for Benalla Bill Sykes has initiated special screenings of the movie at Benalla Performing Arts and Convention Centre as a community fundraiser for the Benalla RSL and an opportunity for students to see the film.
‘‘This is an extremely evocative film about the horrors of war, post-war suffering, forgiveness and friendship,’’ Dr Sykes said.
‘‘The film is based on the book by Eric Lomax which tells of his experiences as a Japanese prisoner of war working on the Burma-Siam railway, and the story has many parallels with our local Benalla ‘Weary’ Dunlop story.’’
Benalla RSL president Jeff Lewis said the purpose of the screenings was to educate all age groups about the history of prisoners of war.
‘‘The amount of Australian personnel that were POWs and didn’t return to their families — it should be explained to the population from students up what really happened in the war years,’’ Mr Lewis said.
All Years 10, 11 and 12 students from Benalla P-12 College and FCJ College will attend a screening of the film on Thursday, March 20, and the community is invited to attend the fundraising screening on Friday, March 21.
‘‘I encourage as many people as possible to make the most of this opportunity to see this movie, which reinforces that the freedom we enjoy today was paid for by immeasurable suffering by many of our servicemen and women and their families,’’ Dr Sykes said.
Before the community fundraising screening, members of Benalla RSL will share their experiences as servicemen.
Benalla RSL life member Norman Davis said every day something reminded him of his experiences as an air gunner in World War II.
‘‘I don’t think many people realise that post-traumatic stress is part of war experiences, and that’s what we’re trying to get through to people who are coming from the Middle East and Iraq wars — that it affects their mental attitude,’’ Mr Davis said.
Benalla RSL appeals officer Alan Ould said the film would help increase the understanding of what locals went through during times of war.
‘‘I hope that they get a real appreciation of what happened to our POWs, including many from this district,’’ he said.
The screenings coincide with new digital technology installed at BPACC, and The Railway Man will be one of the first films screened with this state-of-the-art equipment.
Tickets are available from Bill Sykes’ electorate office, 2/55 Carrier St Benalla between 9
Community support needed for drug and alcohol treatment centre near Numurkah.
Yarrawonga/Mulwala's largest ever professional golf event, the Shepparton BMW Senior Victorian Open, got underway today with 124 players hitting off from 8am to 1pm on Yarrawonga's Black Bull Golf Course at Silverwoods.
Tatura’s rainfall for the last three months of 2015, 116.6mm, was marginally down on the long-term average for the same period, 120.8mm.
JON Lam’s exhibition Heart to Art will open at Alton Gallery on Friday
THE second annual Christmas town party in Lockington did not quite attract the crowd organisers were hoping for, but it failed to dampen their spirit.
Special supplement in this weeks edition
For Tocumwal’s Lynda Snowden, working the land hasn’t stopped her from falling in love with the majestic surrounds of her day to day life.
TOOLLEEN Recreation Reserve Committee of Management presented three awards on Australia Day in front of 80 local residents.
The cuteness level at Maryanne Ryan’s place is overflowing the bucket, with the arrival of baby Dougal the donkey.
Deniliquin doctor Marion Magee says she is disgusted with the treatment of local nurses.
Federal Member for Murray Sharman Stone has been criticised by two Victorian MPs for suggesting the Federal Government should stop spending money on the $2 billion irrigation modernisation program until problems are sorted out.
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.