It wasn't only the soldiers on the battlefield who left their mark forever on the Gallipoli peninsula. Every Kiwi who has visited the sacred ground will surely have seen the contribution to the Anzac effort left by Auckland architect Edmund Townley Marr.
During World War I, Marr was a lance corporal in the New Zealand Expeditionary Force. He served between 1916 and 1919 in Egypt and the Army of Occupation in Germany in the 3rd (Auckland) Regiment, Auckland Infantry Regiment, on the roll of the New Zealand Rifle Brigade.
After the war he became involved with Gallipoli. There are 21 cemeteries dotting the rugged landscape, with graves, special memorials and memorials to the missing inscribed with the names of the fallen. Marr, known to his family as Ned, was part of the team who worked on the monuments.
Scottish architect John Burnet was responsible for a number of the war memorials in Gallipoli, Palestine and Suez following the end of WWI. He took a team of New Zealanders and Australians - to represent the Anzacs - to Gallipoli in September 1919 to start work there.
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Marr was commissioned to work on the graves project by the New Zealand Government. He lived in a small house on the peninsula for three years until the work was complete. "Living there, he had a real feeling for those men, that's why he spent so much time there and put in so much effort," his grandson Bill Marr told the Herald. "Grandad was meticulous. He would have done all the 21 cemeteries, him and a guy from Tasmania. They designed them and supervised them being built."
Edmund Marr never spoke much of his time at Gallipoli, despite not being there for the campaign in which New Zealand lost almost 3000 men. "I think he was distressed at the needless deaths. It overcame him," Bill Marr said. "The braveness of the lads, that's totally undisputed. They were incredibly brave - what they did was amazing."
Gallipoli historian and author Ian McGibbon explained how the memorials were designed.
"Built in the form of an enclosure containing the graves, each cemetery has a monument, the size of which depends on the number of graves buried within it. These monuments are building the style of a mural cross, with the cross projecting from a higher central structure. In the larger cemeteries a great stone of remembrance is set in front of the monument."