Anzac Parade - Rats of Tobruk Memorial

Rats of Tobruk Memorial

The German siege of the Libyan seaport town of Tobruk began on 10 April 1941. After desperate fighting, most of the Australians at Tobruk were relieved by October 1941. The town was continuously contested, however, until the Allied victory at El Alamein in late 1942. The Allied defence of Tobruk lengthened the German supply lines and diverted German forces which might have been deployed against Allied troops elsewhere. This memorial commemorates the endurance of those who were besieged.

The replica memorial is based on the 1941 memorial in the Tobruk War Cemetery, built by Australian soldiers during the siege, which has since been destroyed. The inscription stone, the only surviving relic of the original memorial, and at one time a front step of the Tobruk Post Office, is incorporated.

The memorial designed by architects Denton Corker Marshall Pty Ltd takes the form of an obelisk. Surrounding walls portray the perimeter defences and the design recalls the area in which the siege took place. The coastline and harbour are to the front and the defence positions flank the rear of the memorial. The Eternal Flame, fabricated from bronze, was created by Marc Clark and installed in 1984.

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