World War Two commemorations

Tom Connors and his daughter

Through childhood eyes: hidden stories of World War Two

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two. Collecting community stories of the war is a meaningful way to commemorate this significant anniversary and we have documented some local living memories of how World War Two impacted on young people in our City.

We have created a soundscape from the stories that we have collected of child residents of the City, read by children living in Port Phillip today.

Visit our Through childhood eyes: hidden stories of World War Two webpage for the stories and more. You can also watch the recording of our Remembrance Day event which was held on 8 November 2020. 

'Through childhood eyes: hidden stories of world War Two’ is supported by the Victorian Government through the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two Grants Program






Image: Tom Connors and his daughter, 1945. Port Phillip City Collection. 


Commemorative services for post-COVID-19 times 


Friends of Elwood RSL hold annual ANZAC Day and Remembrance Day services.

Port Melbourne

Port Melbourne ANZAC commemorative service is held in support of the RSL in conjunction with Port Melbourne Primary School each year on ANZAC Day at the Port Melbourne World War I Memorial Fountain, Beach Street.


A memorial honouring old stories was unveiled at Burnett Gray Gardens, Ripponlea on 15 November 2015 as part of local Remembrance Day commemorations. This memorial is dedicated to Victorian Jewish soldiers who served in World War I and II. For more information visit VAJEX Australia.

St Kilda

St Kilda RSL Sub-branch holds annual ANZAC Day and Remembrance Day services.


World War Two sites of significance in the City of Port Phillip

These sites have a connection to World War Two in the City of Port Phillip. This map is only a guide to the diverse places that are connected with the war. Many are not able to be visited as a number are private or commercial buildings or have limited public access. Click on the map for information. 


World War Two – some significant dates for Australia

These dates are compiled from various sources and are indicative. For more information visit the Australian War Memorial website and the Shrine of Remembrance website.



1 September 1939

Germany invades Poland

3 September 1939

Britain and France declare war on Germany

3 September 1939

Declaration of Australia’s involvement in the war

April/May 1940

Germany invades Norway and Denmark and the Blitzkreig against Holland, France and Belgium is launched

26 May 1940

Evacuation of British Expeditionary Force from Dunkirk, France

11 June 1940

Italy joins Axis powers

22 June 1940

France signs armistice with Germany

June 1940

Royal Australian Navy enters the war

July – October 1940

British victory in the Battle of Britain

September 1940

Japan joins Axis powers


Australian army engages in combat

22 June 1941

Germany invades Russia in Operation Barbarossa 

April to August 1941

Siege of Tobruk, North Africa

7 December 1941

Japan bombs Pearl Harbour, Hawaii, and the USA enters the war


John Curtain becomes Prime Minister of Australia

February 1942

Fall of Singapore to Japan and the bombing of Darwin

May 1942

Battle of Coral Sea

June 1942

Battle of Midway, Pacific Ocean

1942 to 1943

Battles in Papua New Guinea

November 1942

Allied victory at El Alamein, North Africa

12 May 1943

Axis powers surrender North Africa

3 September 1943

Italy surrenders

January 1944

Relief of Leningrad

6 June 1944

D-Day – the Allied invasion of France

July 1944

Japan evicted from Burma

7 May 1945

German High Command signs unconditional surrender

14 August 1945

Japan agrees to unconditional surrender





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