Cairns Sailors and Soldiers Memorial (Digger)

Location of Cairns Sailors and Soldiers Memorial (Digger)

The Esplanade
opposite Base Hospital
1629km north of Brisbane
(Bruce and Cook Highways)
Cairns QLD 4870

The 41 ft high sandstone monument comprises a tall clock tower topped by a life-sized statue of an Australian infantry soldier standing at ease and looking out to sea. The monument stands on a granite base and concrete steps. Four leaded marble plates are recesses behind red granite columns around the base of the clock tower. Originally it had a 4-faced electric clock, which served as the town clock however the clock is now missing and clock dials have since been painted to represent 4.28am, the time of the original landing of the ANZACS on Gallipoli. A time capsule was placed in the original foundation. It was replaced by another time capsule following re-location. The monument is now flanked by two guns, one being an old naval gun dating to 1900. It is now surrounded by concrete fence posts and a path.


Leaded marble plates bear many inscriptions as well as the names of the 142 locals (including 2 women) who fell in WWI.
Refer to additional photographs on this page.

Conflicts commemorated
First World War, 1914–1918
Memorial type
Additional information

This memorial has outstanding significance as a major landmark and the only war memorial of its type in Queensland. This is the most costly WWI memorial in Qld - erected in 1926 at a cost of $4148 when a Sergeant in the AIF was paid $436.80 per year. Mason was Melrose & Fenwick.

Recorded by
Shirley and Trevor McIvor
Date recorded
27 February 2009

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