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Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

The 100th anniversary of New Zealand's darkest day.

For those not familiar with the battle of Passchendaele, in Belgium, it is the World War I battle in which New Zealand lost the most lives in one offensive – 850 men were killed in the space of around 4 hours. The consensus afterwards was that the New Zealanders were sent on a suicide mission based on bad intelligence. But this battle isn’t just recognised for the dead it also symbolises the ties New Zealand has with Belgium. We came from the ends of the Earth to support a tiny nation, like our own, who were being destroyed by war.

To commemorate the event and ongoing bond with Europe, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT) commissioned Storybox, to create a light and sound show that told the historical story. The show was a 150 feet projection that was displayed on the rampart walls of the Menin Gate, the memorial to the missing, in Ypres Belgium.