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Restoration of Miles Artillery Gun reveals it’s one of only three in the world

The treasured German field gun at Anzac Park in Miles was discovered to be extremely rare during its restoration late last year.                                                    

Members of the Miles RSL sub-branch and Councillor Kaye Maguire were delighted to hear the German field gun was so rare.

The 7.7 centimetre Nahkampfkanone is set to be returned to Anzac Park on Wednesday, and members of the Miles community were excited to learn it could be one of only three of its kind in the world.

Conservator Melanie Fihelly discovered the German field gun’s significance during its restoration following discussions with military historian Charlie Clelland, who said the other two were located in Sydney and Canada.

The Nahkampfkanone was a German field gun captured by the tenth Infantry Brigade of the third Australian Division at Messines in June, 1917.

Its restoration was an initiative between Western Downs Regional Council and the Miles RSL sub-branch and is proudly supported by the Queensland Government through the Spirit of Service grant.

Council Spokesperson for Community and Cultural Development Councillor Kaye Maguire said she was thrilled to learn the gun was such a rare piece of memorabilia that could be enjoyed by locals and visitors for years to come.

“It’s very exciting for locals of the town to hear that this gun is one of only three in the world and it’s right here in Miles,” she said.

“Restoring this German field gun from World War One was important to Council, the Miles RSL sub-branch and the community to serve as a reminder of the sacrifices and contributions of those who served.

“We hope people will be encouraged to visit the site and take a moment to connect with this extremely rare piece of Australian history.”

Shirley Makin, Secretary of the Miles RSL Sub Branch, said the news made her even more excited for the gun’s return.

“I think it will be wonderful. Especially now, knowing the significance of the gun, it makes it all the more special,” she said.

Prior to the restoration, it was also discovered the gun is owned by the Australian War Memorial and has been on permanent loan to the Miles RSL sub-branch since 1957 — something Ms Makin said was “a great privilege”.

The artillery gun will be returned to Anzac Park in Miles at 10am Wednesday 16 January, with Councillor Kaye Maguire and members of the Miles RSL sub-branch to attend.

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