Recognising those who returned from War
Between 1914 and 1918 some 112,399 Victorians enlisted to
fight in the First World War. Those who died from causes associated
with battle are commemorated by the War Graves Commission. However,
those who returned and then lived out their lives in the community,
and are buried in our cemeteries, are not recognised unless their
family has recorded this fact in their inscription.
In recognition of this and to commemorate the centenary of World
War I, the Greater Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust (GMCT), in
conjunction with the Returned Services League of Australia (RSL
Victorian Branch), has produced a special poppy tile that can be
affixed to headstones and cremation niches to indicate that someone
served their country during war.
GMCT wants to encourage families to renew their links to their
family members, particularly those who enlisted in the Great War,
and to urge them to place a permanent record of their service on
their gravesite. Many graves have been forgotten by families over
the years and have become neglected. Younger family members may be
unaware that their ancestors served at all unless their family
memories and history are strong.
The Centenary Poppy Tile is a decorative packed kit that
contains two small, highly glazed Australian-made white porcelain
tiles with a striking red Flanders Poppy printed onto the surface
in a slightly raised finish. The packaging features the
original Flanders Poem plus the Ode of Remembrance. The package has
been designed with the assistance and support of the RSL.
The Poppy Tile package includes two tiles of different sizes to
suit most memorial types. However, it may not fit all plaques or
headstones depending on the number of words on the headstone /
plaque, its size, because of edging borders or similar.
The tile sizes are:
- 5x5 cm suitable for headstones
- 3x3 cm suitable for most plaques on cremation niches
The package includes a wipe and adhesive backing.
These commemorative tiles may be fixed to a headstone or
cremation niche using a self-adhesive patch that is already applied
to the tile. The larger tile is suitable for headstones and
the smaller for cremation niches.
Once the selected tile is applied the second tile can be fixed
to a home letterbox or gatepost to signify that this family has
links to the First World War.
The GMCT has made the packages available for sale at all GMCT
cemeteries and participating RSL branches. Other cemeteries around
Victoria have been offered the opportunity to sell the package.
The price for the package is $10 (+GST). This is expected
to cover production costs, and any profits will be donated to
Q: Can the Commemorative Poppy
Tile be used on graves other than World War I service
A: Yes. Although the
Poppy Tile was developed as a special WWI centenary project, it can
be used to recognise the service in war of any man or woman who
served in any conflict and whose family wishes to recognise their
For further information or to place an order please
NOTE: The Centenary Poppy Tile is designed
for those who returned from war and lived out the rest of their
lives in their communities. Those who died as a direct result
of war are already officially recognised by the Office of
Australian War Graves.