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Trumpet call ... Riversdale Waikaia RSA sub-branch member Lindsay Wright practices playing the Last Post in readiness for the short Anzac Day service that will be held at the Wendonside War Memorial on Anzac Day at midday. PHOTO:SANDY EGGLESTON

A soft light beams out into the night and welcomes travellers from afar as they drive towards the Wendonside Hall.

The light comes from the recently made-over war memorial beside the hall.

Riversdale Waikaia RSA sub-branch member Lindsay Wright said this Anzac Day, for the first time since 2015, a short service will be held at the memorial.

“So this Anzac Day, just because it’s a hundred years since it was first built, we decided we would have a service at midday.

“It will be quite a simple service, a roll call of all the men that are on [the monument] and the Last Post,” Mr Wright said.

He believed the war memorial was one of the first to be built after World War 1.

“There was a big welcome home for the soldiers in February of 1919 and then the memorial was placed on the school land alongside the school and the local hall.”

During World War 1, 48 young men from the district served and 13 died.

In 2018 Venture Southland made money available for district war memorials to be upgraded, and, under the leadership of Wendonside farmer Bevan Hopcroft, community members tidied up the site.

About $6000 was spent repainting the memorial, repainting the lettering and planting the area around the monument.

“It’s nice to see the monument back to its original condition.

“It’s now had the addition of lights so that in the dark night travelling up the Wendonside straight .. you just see this little beacon of light – it’s really cool.”

There was a strong community spirit in the district.

“In Wendonside, if something needs to be done, people do it.”

Refreshments would be available in the hall after the service.