Ballot for Gallipoli Anzac centenary opens today

Just two thousand tickets have been made available to New Zealand citizens wanting to attend the centenary commemorations at Gallipoli in 2015. Photo / Kenny Rodger
Just two thousand tickets have been made available to New Zealand citizens wanting to attend the centenary commemorations at Gallipoli in 2015. Photo / Kenny Rodger

The ballot opens at midday today for those wanting to attend the centenary Anzac Day commemorations in Gallipoli in 2015.

Just two thousand tickets have been made available for New Zealand citizens with descendants of Gallipoli soldiers, and military veterans to be given priority in their allocation.

Of those 2000 tickets:

• 200 will be available for direct descendants of Gallipoli veterans (Children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren etc. But not nieces/nephews or great-nieces/nephews etc.)

• 200 will be available for veterans (Individuals who served overseas and hold the New Zealand War Service Medal 1939-45 or the New Zealand Operational Service Medal.

Their service must have been as a member of the New Zealand Armed Forces).

• 1500 will be available for all New Zealanders.

• 100 will be reserved for allocation by the Government to special groups such as youth, children of Gallipoli veterans, and others where it is not appropriate to ballot.

New Zealanders who are both direct descendants of Gallipoli veterans and veterans themselves are eligible to enter the ballot in both categories.

Descendants and veterans who are unsuccessful in securing places via those categories will also automatically be entered into the general ballot.

Ballot applicants must be New Zealand citizens or permanent residents aged 18 on April 25, 2015.

Successful applicants will be granted a double pass and can choose anyone to accompany them to Gallipoli.

Veterans' Affairs Minister Michael Woodhouse is expecting there will be strong demand for them.

"One estimate is that we could have four applications for every ticket we've got. So people will need to be in to be part of the ballot but some will be disappointed no doubt," he said.

RSA President Don McIver said even so, Gallipoli is a place to visit any time.

"Whilst there will be people who are disappointed, Gallipoli is always a very special peninsula to visit where you can walk around quietly and contemplate."

Turkish authorities are considering allowing some people to witness the historic event from cruise ships anchored off Anzac Cove.

To find out more or to enter the ballot, click here.

- additional reporting: nzherald.co.nz

- Newstalk ZB

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