A rare set of medals awarded to three New Zealand brothers who died in two consecutive wars are coming up for auction in Auckland on Saturday.

The Way brothers, from Canterbury, all heeded the call to arms, and all three died on foreign shores.

Arthur Way served in South Africa during the Boer War as a mounted trooper. Near the end of the campaign in 1902, he was killed in action.

Thirteen years later, his brother Francis fought on the slopes of the Gallipoli peninsular.

On the night of 6-7 August 1915, he was in an attack that battled up Beauchops Ridge, to the left of where the infamous attack on Chunuk Bair was to be mounted a day later.


He fell wounded about 1am from intense machine gun fire. He succumbed to his wounds the next day on the beaches, as the main attack was starting.

Two years on, the third brother, Pearce Way, was a trooper in the New Zealand Rifle Brigade in the Ypres battle.

The advance started on 12 October 1917. Inadequate artillery support and churned up mud made the advance suicidal against the enemy defences.

Pierce fell some time during that day, and the assault eventually failed.

Included in the auction is a large range of other medals, many from New Zealand, and some awarded for great acts of bravery. The sale also includes a great range of other items including photo albums and documents, uniforms and equipment.

Auction manager Dunbar Sloane said the medals were expected to make $3000-4000.

They were previously part of a large "life time" military item collection.

There were about 300 military items to be auctioned this weekend.

The auction will be held at Auckland's Holy Trinity Cathedral Visitor Centre at 2pm.