View from Padre White Lookout

View from Padre White LookoutNeil McKnight688 x 380 px. 67.8 Kb.


Padre White Lookout

Born in London in 1883 Arthur Earn­est White is con­sidered to be the Father of the ANZAC Dawn Service.

Arriv­ing in Albany aboard the SS Persic in 1912, White spent the next 4 years based in Williams. Frequently visit­ing Albany he was likely pre­s­ent on November 7, 1914, when the ANZAC convoy gathered in King George Sound to leave for the Great War.

In 1916, White joined the Australian Im­perial Force, serv­ing in France as an army chaplain, 'Padre', with the 44th Battal­ion. He was medic­ally dis­charged in 1918, return­ing to Albany.

On Febru­ary 24, Rev White held a priv­ate requiem mass for the battle dead at St John's Church, after which the group walked to the summit of Mt Clar­ence to watch a boat­man cast a wreath into the harb­our.

Reverend White left for the east coast, until 1929, when he returned to Albany to become Rector of Saint John's Church.

On April 25th, 1930 he introduced a dawn service, ending with a wreath being laid at the nearby war mem­orial. The follow­ing year he added cast­ing a wreath into King George Sound and climb­ing to the summit of Mount Clar­ence, where many had gathered to watch the convoy depart in 1914. This trad­ition was repea­ted every ANZAC Day.

Rev White left Albany in 1938 and spent the rest of his life in New South Wales. He died in 1954 aged 71.

White is con­sidered to be the Father of the ANZAC Dawn Service.

Today the Padre White Look­out is an Albany icon, popular for its histori­cal signific­ance and for the swee­ping pan­ora­mic views of King George Sound, Mid­dle­ton Beach, dis­t­ant Porongorup and Stirl­ing Ranges, and Albany surrounds.

Part of the Herit­age Park com­plex, the look­out com­prises a steel walk­way, view­ing platform, inter­pre­t­ive sign­age and accent light­ing. The Look­out was refurbished in 2013 as part of the $5.8m Herit­age Park up­grade and featured prom­inently in the 2014 ANZAC Centen­ary celebrations.

Article updated 19/10/2016.