Anzac parade called off but service still on

A memo has been sent to all organisations attending the Anzac Day commemorations on April 25. times photo Wayne Martin

Howick’s Anzac Day parades have been cancelled following police requests however “static services” will still go ahead.

Howick RSA has advised that the NZ Police have requested that all Anzac Day parades be cancelled in light of the terror attacks in Christchurch which claimed 50 lives.

“The threat level remains high and marching parades may make a tempting target,” the RSA note said.

“To adequately cover all Anzac events, the NZ Police prefer a static service without marching.”

The Howick Local Board, along with the Howick RSA, have agreed to cancel the Dawn and Civic Parades but stress that the Dawn and Civic Commemoration Services on Stockade Hill will still proceed at 6.05am and 11am respectively.

“Groups attending should gather on Stockade Hill at the entrance to the cenotaph area from where they will be directed to their assigned position,” the note said.

“No groups should gather on the roads around Stockade Hill.”

Meanwhile, Police Commissioner Mike Bush said in a statement that New Zealand Police would like to thank the RSA and community leaders for their support and understanding in regard to the consolidation of Anzac Day services for this year.

“The decision to provide advice that some services should be consolidated was not taken lightly, and was made for the safety of everyone involved,” said Bush.

“We have clearly stated that there is no information of a specific threat to Anzac Day.
However the national threat level in New Zealand remains at high at this time.

“In light of this we will not hesitate from taking the steps we need – including the advice we have provided regarding Anzac Day services – to keep our communities safe. While we understand the advice to consolidate Anzac Day events is disappointing for some people, our priority is public safety and we will not compromise on this.

He said in the current environment it is important that people feel safe to carry on their daily business, including attendance at Anzac services.

“Our job is to ensure that people not only feel safe, but are safe. We fully recognise the importance of Anzac Day events.

“Police staff will be in attendance at services to pay their respects this year, just as they are every year.

“Our message to anyone attending Anzac services remains one of vigilance –  if you see anything suspicious then call police on 111.”

  • Please contact the organiser Mike Cole 0212388464 or the Howick RSA (5349702) if there are any queries.