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The local Curlewis and Drysdale community welcomed a new park this week in honour of a local World War I war hero.

Percy Cherry Park off Jetty Road in Curlewis was formally named in a ceremony with Cherry family representative Bill Westhead, Member for the Western Region Simon Ramsay MLC, the Drysdale RSL’s Geoff Zanker, Bellarine Historical Society’s Bob Willey and Cr Rod Macdonald all present.

Clifton Springs Primary School captains and bugler Isabelle Searle from St Ignatius College participated in an event that exemplified the local community spirit found on the Bellarine.

The park commemorates local World War I hero Captain Percy Cherry VC MC, who personified the ANZAC’s courage and persistence in the face of overwhelming odds. It is located on Creekside Drive off Jetty Road not far from where Percy was born in Drysdale.

Mr Westhead said the naming of Percy Cherry Park was very important for his family in honouring Percy’s courage, helping to heal the generational pain of the family’s losses, and understanding the incredible commitment of those who fought in the Great War.

“We are not here to glorify war, but to venerate a group of gentlemen (who fought in war),” Mr Westhead said.

Percy Herbert Cherry was one of 194 men from Drysdale who fought in World War I, enlisting in the Australian Imperial Force in 1915 and serving in Gallipoli. He distinguished himself through his bravery, intelligence and “tactical eye,” deploying weapons and men to support neighbouring units, including British troops in several conflicts. He was rapidly promoted, rising from Quartermaster Sergeant, company Sergeant Major, Second Lieutenant and then Lieutenant in August 1916.Percy Cherry Park opening overheadPercy Cherry sign 2

Bill Westhead Yvonne Westhead Clifton Springs Captains Simon Ramsay

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