25 Apr 2013

Auckland clean-up ahead of WWI anniversary

5:48 pm on 25 April 2013

The Auckland Council is to embark on a clean-up of war graves and memorials around the city as it it prepares to mark a hundred years since the start of World War I.

Mayor Len Brown has announced several plans to mark the anniversary in 2014 - many of which will focus around the Auckland War Memorial Museum, which sits on the same site as the Cenotaph.

Mr Brown said there would also be a trail of the city's heritage sites developed.

He said many of those who died in the first world war helped create Auckland and they should be remembered for both their contribution to the war and the city.

The director of the Auckland War Memorial Museum said it is improving its database of New Zealanders' Anzac stories ahead of the commemoration.

Rear Admiral Roy Clare told a packed Anzac Day civic service at the Auckland Domain on Thursday the museum was only the guardian of history.

"The stories within the museum are not owned in the museum, they're owned by all of us as the people, the descendants of those of whom 7000 gave their lives in World War I.

"We're investing and improving the Cenotaph digital database so that we can all load up our family stories."

Mr Clare said it is also important to remember New Zealanders still being killed in wars overseas - most recently in Afghanistan.