LIGHTHORSE: Barrett's Creek farmer Alan Reardon on his 'Waler' during the 2015 Centenary ride.
LIGHTHORSE: Barrett's Creek farmer Alan Reardon on his 'Waler' during the 2015 Centenary ride.

Tracing the hoof steps of our ANZAC history

THE Battle of Beersheba, one of the most decisive victories of the First World War, propelled Tabulam man General Harry Chauvel and his Light Horse regiment into the history books.

One hundred years on, the organisers of the highly successful Copmanhurst to Grafton 2015 ANZAC Centenary Horse Ride are planning to keep his memory alive with a three-day horse ride from Tabulam to Copmanhurst.

They are looking for horsemen to join them on this historic journey.

Grafton RSL Sub Branch president Brian Bultitude said Tabulam's involvement with the Australian Light Horse went way back to 1885 when Tabulam Station was owned by the Chauvel family. 

Captain Charles Chauvel, who had previously been in the Indian Army, offered to raise a regiment of local horsemen to serve for official duties if called upon.

Two Upper Clarence Light Horse troops were formed and on New Year's Day, 1886, 129 men were sworn in including Chauvel's two sons, Harry George and Edward.

Fast forward 32 years later to October 31, 1917 and Australia's very first commissioned officer, General Harry George Chauvel was asked to lead the Beersheba Charge.

At dusk, he led two regiments, the 4th and the 12th, in a mounted charge on the Turks, partly out of a desperately need to take town's wells, in order to be able to water their horses.

Thirty men were killed during the charge.

To commemorate these horsemen, registered riders will gather at the Tabulam race track on October 31, in preparation to follow the tracks of Chauvel and his troops on their training missions to Copmanhurst the next day.

The three-day ride will go through The Broadwater and Hassans Creek before reaching the final destination.

Mr Bultitude said all riders were required to have a back up crew with food and supplies for each day and water would be available for horses.

To register, phone Ted Brown on 0447 473 143, or ring the Grafton RSL Sub Branch office on 6642 4399. 



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