Gallipoli Oaks on debut at Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show

The Gallipoli Oaks Project will be promoted at the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show (MIFGS) as part of the National Trust’s stand on the upper balcony level.  Come and visit us and see the Gallipoli Oaks seedlings on display, and learn more about the project.

And on Sunday 30 March, we are delighted to announce that Education Minister Martin Dixon MP and Minster for Veterans’  Affairs Damian Drum MP will both attend MIFGS to launch the education kit for the Gallipoli Oaks Project. The education kit has been created by the National Trust and the History Teachers’ Association of Victoria, made possible by the generous support of the Danks Trust.

Click here to view a PDF of our Media Release for MIFGS.

Below is text version  of the media release.


The story of the Gallipoli Oaks trees is now accompanied by an education resource kit, developed by the National Trust in partnership with the History Teachers’ Association of Victoria. It will be launched by Minister for Education Hon. Martin Dixon at this year’s Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show (MIFGS) with Minister for Veterans Affairs Hon. Damien Drum also attending. 

The Gallipoli Oaks Project has been created by the National Trust of Australia (Vic) to deliver a Gallipoli Oak Tree to every primary school in Victoria between 2015 and 2018.

CEO for the Trust Mr Martin Purslow acknowledges that launching the teaching resources at MIFGS was the most fitting venue to choose for this type of historically-significant ‘green-heritage’ educational product.

“The resource kit consisting of an ebook, teachers’ resources and website are all based on a story about the surviving original Victorian Gallipoli Oaks grown from acorns collected by soldiers at Gallipoli and returned to Victoria where they were planted nearly 100 years ago. Heritage trees and MIFGS go hand-in-hand,” he said.

The teachers’ resources, developed to aid primary-aged Victorian children in grasping the Gallipoli Oaks story, are aligned with the Grade 3 National Curriculum unit of ‘Community and Remembrance’.

“The teachers’ resources are not only aligned to the National Curriculum and intended to provide the background and knowledge to convey the story to students, they will also guarantee the passing on of the Gallipoli history from generation-to-generation,” Mr Purslow said.

For the National Trust, launching the Gallipoli Oak teaching resource kit is integral to the commencement of the commemoration of the ANZAC Centenary 2015-2018, and it is also central to realising the fundamental education strategy of our inspiring Gallipoli Oaks project, said Mr Purslow.

“Alongside the significant themes of the Gallipoli Oaks project such as ‘remembrance’, ‘heritage’ and ‘horticulture’, we expect that these resources will be a great starting point for Victorian primary teachers to introduce students to the broader World War I narrative during the Centenary of ANZAC (2015-2018),” said Mr Peter Whitelaw, Chair of the Gallipoli Oaks Project Advisory Committee.

The three parts of the resource kit: the ebook, the teachers’ resources and the website will assist in conveying the Gallipoli Oaks story to Grade 3 children. The ebook component in particular tells of how a young Australian soldier (Captain Winter Cooke from Murndal, near Hamilton) noticed some unusual trees at Gallipoli that looked like a holly bush, but that also had acorns similar to oak trees.

“Captain Winter Cooke remembered that his Uncle Samuel in Hamilton was a bit of tree expert; someone that would be interested in these unusual acorns. So he sent a package of acorns to him almost 100 years ago.

“This amazing story featuring these acorns was the genesis for this project. As we pass on trees from the ‘grandfather’ tree in Western Victoria and other ‘father’ trees in Geelong, primary school children will learn about Gallipoli and the care of trees,” said Mr Whitelaw.
“With the assistance of the Victorian Government and the support of the Danks Trust, the National Trust has been able to complete this part of the Gallipoli Oaks project, said Mr Purslow.

“The National Trust also thanks the History Teachers Association of Victoria; the Victorian Departments of Education and the Early Childhood Development and Veterans’ Affairs – in particular Education Minister Martin Dixon MP and Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Damien Drum MP for supporting the completion of the education component of the project.” said Mr Purslow.

The Gallipoli Oaks project would also like to acknowledge: Nationwide Trees, Mt. William Advanced Trees, Smith and Gordon Nursery and the Friends of Burnley for their support growing trees.

Following the MIFGs launch, the resources will be available on the website