Commemorative Events

A number of events are held annually in Victoria to commemorate Australia's involvement in times of conflicts and peacekeeping operations.

Darwin Defenders Commemoration Ceremony: 19 February

The Darwin Defenders 1942-1945 Commemoration Ceremony is held on 19 February every year at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne to honour those who served and died during the attacks on Darwin in 1942.

The ceremony is an opportunity for veterans, their families and school students to acknowledge the contribution made by those serving and living in Darwin during this period.

Legacy Annual Anzac Commemoration Ceremony for Students: April

The Melbourne Legacy Commemoration Ceremony for students was first held in 1932 and is an opportunity for school students from across Victoria to commemorate the sacrifices made by Australian men and women during various conflicts.

Over 3000 people attend the ceremony which is held each year at the Shrine of Remembrance, Melbourne, on the last Friday before ANZAC Day.

ANZAC Day: 25 April

ANZAC Day commemorates the first major military action fought by Australian and New Zealand forces during the First World War - the conflict at Gallipoli that began on 25 April 1915. The name "ANZAC" originates from an abbreviation of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps that landed at Gallipoli.

Find out more about ANZAC Day.

VE Day: 8 May

VE (Victory in Europe) Day commemorates the German surrender to the Allied forces in Europe which marked the end of World War Two in Europe.

39th Australian Infantry Battalion Association (Kokoda Day Pilgrimage): 14 August

Kokoda, Papua New Guinea, is considered one of the defining events in Australia's involvement in World War Two. The 39th Battalion were one of two Victorian battalions that battled the Imperial Japanese Army along the Kokoda Track. This service commemorates their contribution and is held at the Shrine of Remembrance, Melbourne.

VP Day: 15 August

VP (Victory in the Pacific) Day marks the end of World War Two with the surrender of Japan to the allied forces on 15 August 1945. Over one million Australians served during World War Two when the Australian population was a little over seven million people.

Vietnam Veterans Day Commemoration Ceremony: 18 August

This ceremony commemorates all Australian Vietnam veterans and falls on the anniversary of the 1966 Battle of Long Tan. A ceremony is held at the Shrine of Remembrance, Melbourne.

Battle for Australia Commemoration Ceremony: September

The Battle for Australia Commemoration Ceremony commemorates all those actions taken by Australia and its Allies in the Pacific area to defend Australia against the Imperial Japanese military forces during World War Two. The service is held on the first Wednesday in September at the Shrine of Remembrance, Melbourne.

Find out more about the Battle for Australia.

Remembrance Day: 11 November

Remembrance Day is observed on 11 November every year and marks the end of the First World War after more than four years of conflict that left more than nine million soldiers dead. Remembrance Day was originally known as Armistice Day as it commemorates the signing of the armistice (peace agreement) between Germany and the Allies that ended the Great War.

Information on other commemorative services and events held in Victoria:

Last updated on Wednesday, 30 August 2017