Students leave on European journey

Collie Senior High School Anzac tour students and prefixes at the Anzac Day school service held in Soldiers Park. Photo: Breeanna Tirant
Collie Senior High School Anzac tour students and prefixes at the Anzac Day school service held in Soldiers Park. Photo: Breeanna Tirant

Collie Senior High School students set off on Saturday, April 13 to Europe for 15 days on their Anzac tour.

Collie Senior High School student Teegan Biluta is one of 20 students to go on the adventure.

"I personally decided to go on the tour to see what it was like for my family members and what they went through," she said.

"When you learn about the wars at school you can never really picture it, so to go and visit those places in Europe will be great to see what it was actually like."

Collie Senior High School tour leader Ed Croft said the tour was an important experience.

"You can teach history in a book and kids will learn it, but unless you walk the battlefields you don't know the enormity of that conflict and the sadness and tragic waste of life that it was. You don't understand," he said.

"We have a list of where all the memorials are for Collie soldiers and ancestors that the kids looked up.

"We have two beleaguers and we will hold a service for any and all Collie soldiers that we come across."

Mr Croft said the students had been fundraising to head off on the trip for well over a year.

"The journey of raising the funds is just as important in some ways because they earn the right to go," he said.

Local RSL veteran Craig Winslow also headed off on the trip.

The students spend the first three days in Paris visiting the Eiffel Tower, the Luxembourg gardens, the Louvre, Notre Dame and the Arc de Triomphe.

They travel north to tour the battlefields and end up in Belgium, where they will see the Australian Divisional War Memorials, including the 4th memorial at Bellengerife, Hill 60, and the Menzies Ridge.

Students also participate in the Menin Gate Memorial with Belgium school Atheneum Pottelberg, who have previously had students come to visit Collie in 2016.

Students also tour the battlefields of Errors, Pozziers, and Mouquet Farm, before heading to to Villers-Bretonneux for the Anzac Day dawn service.