News National ANZAC troops honoured for WWI service

ANZAC troops honoured for WWI service

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Australians and New Zealanders who won the Victoria Cross fighting for Britain during the First World War will have their bravery honoured to mark the centenary of the conflict.

ANZAC troops are among more than 170 foreign combatants to be remembered around the globe in an extension of a scheme to lay commemorative paving stones in the home towns of UK-based fighters.

The announcement was made by Prime Minister David Cameron as he flew home from a Commonwealth summit in Sri Lanka.

Many of the heroes decorated for extraordinary acts of courage were from Sri Lanka, with others from Commonwealth countries Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, Pakistan and South Africa.

Nepalese Gurkhas will also feature among those whose stories are to be preserved.

The British government says it will work with each of the national governments involved to find ways with “impact and resonance” to commemorate recipients.

It hopes the choices will involve their stories being accessible to younger generations in the way the stones will do in Britain.

“The countries of today’s Commonwealth played a vital role alongside our allies during the First World War,” Cameron said.

“And I am committed to ensuring that our centenary commemorations properly recognise the Commonwealth contribution and the sacrifices they made.”

One man honoured is New Zealander Sergeant Donald Forrester Brown, who showed “utter contempt for danger and coolness under fire” when he captured key machine gun positions before being killed by a German bullet.

Sergeant Brown was one of 2000 of his countrymen who died on the Somme.