Remembering Borella’s Ride

The inspiring journey of Albert Borella to join the combat of World War I will be re-enacted as part of the Territory’s Anzac Centenary Program in 2015.

“The 100th anniversary of World War I is an opportunity to remember some of our great Australian military history and pay tribute to those who have served their country over the past century,” Chief Minister Adam Giles said.

“I am thrilled that next year we will be able to recreate the remarkable ride of Albert Borella through the Outback from Tennant Creek to Darwin in 1915, to enable him to enlist in the armed forces of Australia.

“This is an amazing Territory military story and this re-enactment will be a feature of our Anzac Centenary commemorations.

“Albert Borella walked, swam through flooded rivers, rode horses and eventually travelled on a mail coach and a train to Darwin. Unable to sign on there, he was taken by ship to Queensland, and then went on to Western Australia for training. He served at Gallipoli and was then transferred to the action of the Western Front.

“Borella received the distinctions of the Mention in Despatches and the Military Medal for his services in action. Wounded, he was commissioned in the field and then received the highest honour for bravery in military service, the Victoria Cross. This he received from the hands of the King himself.”

The Northern Territory Government is proud to support The Borella Ride and looks forward to the Commonwealth Government’s support through the Anzac Centenary Public Funds program.

The ride will be held in February and March 2015 giving roadside spectators, tourists, schools and communities an insight into Albert Borella’s journey.

“We hope it will also raise public awareness about the motivations of WWI volunteers and the difficulties associated with enlistment, especially in the Northern Territory,” Parliamentary Secretary Lia Finocchiaro said.

“The group will travel over 1000kms and stop in the following communities: Tennant Creek, Renner Springs, Elliott, Newcastle Waters, Dunmurra, Daly Waters, Larrimah, Mataranka, Katherine, Pine Creek and Darwin.”

A range of activities will take place at each destination, including historical activities, community breakfasts and BBQs, campfire talks and educations activities. A travelling exhibition will accompany the riders to explain the event and its history.

In May this year, the Territory Government announced a wider program of events including a one-off Community Grants Program to help community groups commemorate the Anzac Centenary and Centenary of Service. Grant applications close on 26 September 2014.

Applications are also open through until August 15 for students wishing to nominate for the 2015 Anzac Spirit Study Tour which will involve a visit to Gallipoli on Anzac Day.

Anyone in years 9, 10 or 11 this year is eligible to apply for one of four spots on the tour which will be a once in a lifetime experience.

To find out more about the ANZAC Centenary events and grants program please visit

Chief Minister – Danielle Parry 0413 081 801
Lead Historian, The Borella Ride – Dr Tom Lewis 0434 999 778