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Emu Gully Heritage Stock Horse Waler Stud logoEmu Gully Heritage Stock Horse Waler Stud logo

Emu Gully Heritage Stock Horse Waler Stud

In the Steps of the Light Horse Tour

Oct 15th - Nov 5th 2012

“A ride of a lifetime, be part of history.”

Following the highly successful tour by the Australian Light Horse Association in 2007 to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the Charge of Beersheba, another ride is being organised for the 95th anniversary.  There are limited vacancies for riders to join the ALHA on this most significant ride through the Negev desert and the magnificent Judean Foothills, literally following in the steps of the Australian Light horse Regiments in 1917. The tour includes a ride around the pyramids of Egypt and a tour of Istanbul and the battlefields of Gallipoli.  Details and itinerary can be found on the ALHA website:  www.lighthorse.org.au  or phone tour organiser Barry Rodgers for further details on 0428 662 528, 07 4697 7865 or email: barry@emugully.com.au


Emugully Air and Land Spectacular  19th - 20th May 2012.

The Emu Gully Air & Land Spectacular is Australia’s largest re-enactment of Anzac history. Australia’s biggest collection of operating military vehicles is not only on display, but comes to life to re-enact Gallipoli, scenes from World War II and other pivotal battles in our Nation’s history. The action on the ground is matched with excitement in the skies, as military aircraft drop bombs and dog-fight in battles overhead. Troops and mounted infantry provide a very real and up-close portrayal of our troops on the ground, as they navigate the trenches and dodge bombs (provided by stunning pyrotechnics and special effects).
The Andrew Sisters Tribute Band provides another highlight, as do the military bands. There are rides for the kids, an ‘animals that went to war nursery’ and much more, that together provide an educational, inspirational and highly entertaining event.
With its Airfield and large Outdoor Education Centre, Emu Gully is an ideal venue. Emu Gully is located at Helidon Spa, near Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.

see youtube video of last years Air and Land:

News: ASHS officially recognises Heritage Stock horses

As part of the Australian Stock Horse Societies 40th Anniversary celebrations, members will be now be able to nominate Registered Australian Stock Horses that carry the traditional breeding of an Australian Stock Horse (thoroughbreds, Station bred horses and breeds present in Australia prior to WWII) for approval as Heritage Stock Horses (HSH). Heritage Stock Horses
must have an extensive pedigree, with a minimum of 3 full generations of known Australian Breeding, have multiple proven links back to Waler Horses of Significance through two grandparents and must not be 100% Thoroughbred. Horses that have any modern breeds (Quarter Horse, Paint, Appaloosa, European Warmbloods, Andulusian etc) within 3 generations will not be eligible for the coverted HSH suffix after their name, however there is provision to breed back to Heritage Stock Horse Status at the fourth cross (a tougher requirement than most breeds). For those people who want a Heritage Stock Horse with absolutely no modern breeds there will be a website listing further details on each horse which applied for HSH approval (successful or otherwise) including the percentage of modern breeds and percentage unknown breeding (if any - many horses will have none).
Pleae note: all Emugully bred horses listed in our foal, mare and stallion pages are eligible for HSH approval and all their applications have been approved by the ASHS so if you own an EMUGULLY horse you do NOT need to apply for assessment, however if you want your registration certificate updated to show their HSH status there is a fee of $15.

For more information click on the below links
Heritage Stock Horses - Frequently Asked Questions
Heritage Stock Horse - Rules and Regulations
Full Article in the ASHS Sept/October journal including application form

Emugully Air and Land Spectacular 2011
Once again our famous ANZAC history and especially our Light Horse history has come alive.  Not only were there Boer war and Charge of Beersheba re-enactments,  tent pegging and other skills at arms displays, there was a Light horse encampment and other static displays.

forging horse shoes at the Light horse Encampment
one of many displays

Simpson and his donkeys

Charge of Beersheba

The original WW1 GS Wagon owned by our Stud was once again on live display used in multiple battle re-enactments pulled by the magnificent team of Cleveland Bays (a breed once commonly used in the Waler era and often referred to as a "coach horse" before being lost as a pure breed until more recent modern times when reintroduced into Australia.)  Thanks to the skills of Bob Edwards, these horses once again raced into battle under gunfire and chaos to rescue men in both the western front re-enactments  and trailing behind the charge. No easy task with a multitude of light horse troopers galloping off in front of them,  it took  all the skill of Bob, who has many years of experience including military re-enactments overseas and we are very privileged to have such a man of experience and expertise bring his horses down for the truly “Spectacular” re-enactments.
Simpson and his Donkey were represented as once again Emugully stud's two mascot donkeys Murphy and Duffy (named after two of Simpson’s donkeys – he was believed to have used 5 different donkeys at Gallipoli) made another crowd pleasing display in the Gallipoli re-enactment rescuing injured troopers in battle and then carrying a “wounded” soldier through the crowds. They loved being patted and photographed by the adoring crowds without ever missing a step.

Cleveland Bays pulling GS Wagon in Boer war re-enactment
In the Charge of Beersheba - it wasn't just the Light Horse mounted infantry in the Charge,
there were many back up vehicles as well as well as horses carrying guns

Animals that went to War Nursery
Having some of our seasoned Troop horses out of action due to injury, Jimmy and Anzac instead represented the horses used by the Australian Light Horse - the Walers that went to war in “The Animals that went to War” nursery and educational display.  Jimmy, represented the many wounded Walers at war who had badly cut his hock to the bone and ANZAC who looked uninjured due to his uncommon staking of his hoof (thru the outer wall not the sole of hoof) which had left him unsound to ride but their friendly dispositions made him them a favourite with the crowds as they patiently stood by while hundreds of hands patted them and fed them seemingly endless hay. Patch, our light draft horse was also on display, representing the heavier Walers that pulled guns and transport wagons, and Rosie our mule represented the many mules used mostly as pack animals during the war.

Anzac - descended from the sire of Midnight a famous mare killed in the Charge of Beersheba

Patch and Rosie

Emu Gully Air and Land Show (May 2009/2010)

The annual Emu Gully Air and Land Spectacular was again an outstanding success in bringing our Anzac history alive, and together with the forthcoming Air and Land Museum, showcases our Anzac History. This "history in action" is not only educational and entertaining for the whole family, but it is inspirational as well. 

Jimmy Tent Pegging

Charge of Beersheba - Jimmy 4th from left our other horses towards back

Boer war - Jimmy and Bushfire 6th and 7th from front

Tom and his horse Cavalier (out of Emu Gully's
broodmare Comma)

"Simpson" and his donkey helping a wounded mate

Apart from seeing the Light Horse in action with the re-enactment of the Charge of Beersheba, Emu Gully also had on display their collection of animals that went to War, including the heavier Gun or Artillery Horses, the typical remount type or lighter "Waler" horse, Donkeys, a Mule and a Camel. Emu Gully Heritage Stockhorse Waler Stud (one of the largest breeders of Heritage Stockhorse Walers in Australia), had their troop horses fully involved in the action, including displays of tentpegging and other skills at arms.  In the battle sequences the horses charge through a pyrotechnic display and were buzzed by “enemy aircraft”.   The Emu Gully horses that are used in these events, (as well as the other Light Horse mounts), have the courage and temperament qualities of their forebears used in WWI by our Anzacs. 

getting ready

some of the Light Horse troops on the day


Two of the Emu Gully horses - our stallion Indee Topic and Jimmy - jumping the trenches in the Re-enacted Charge of Beersheba

However horses were only a small part of the day, as while horses were used in WWI, with the increasing use of the internal combustion engine, the Light Horse Regiments were re-equipped with “iron steeds” by WW2.   Therefore not only were horses on display at the Air and Land Spectacular, but Emu Gully also had on display its inventory of a great number of tanks, armoured vehicles and planes and assorted military equipment as used by the Australian Defence Force in WW1, WW2, Korea and Vietnam.    (Another connection between the Light Horsemen of WW1 and our Air force, is that it was believed that a horseman had the natural elements of balance and daring that suited them for the role of a pilot so as a result, many in the Australian Light Horse were recruited for the Australian Flying Corps.)

In addition to the battle displays and re-enactments of the Australian Light Horse the other re-enactments involved the Air Force and or Armoured units, including a spectacular display of a simulated Napalm strike.  For some links to YouTube footage of these events see:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJZ9EI8ULcE 4.51 min "Eye of the Tiger"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJZ9EI8ULcE 4.52 min

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XcMMEbuKIlQ&feature=related Military Tanks at Emu gully 7.55 min


Emu Gully Helidon is excited to announce it is hosting a huge "Air & Land Spectacular"
May 2nd and 3rd 2009

The Australian Light Horse will display some “skill at arms” routines including tent-pegging and a comedy tent dropping scenario. There will be Light Horse re-enactments including a re-enactment of the Charge of Beersheba with the horses showing their mettle under fire, featuring the genuine stockhorse Walers descended from the same bloodlines as those horses who went to war. The Emu Gully troop horses will be prominent in this action.
An exciting "Anzac experience" for the whole family. The show will be entertaining, educational and inspirational. Our compere is well known show announcer Angus Lane. Together with specialist commentators you will be informed, educated, entertained and inspired by our remarkable Anzac legend.
For more details including the program, how to get there, video clip,
booking details and more information see http://www.airandlandshow.com.au




The recent trip by 70 Light Horsemen from the Australian Light Horse Association to commemorate the 90th anniversary of the charge of Beersheba, received unexpected and unprecedented worldwide publicity.  This publicity was not by accident.  A documentary has been made of this momentous trip called "In the steps of the Light Horse".  The Australian Light Horse rode onto centre stage of history in 1917 to fulfil a destiny, and to help put in place some of the dynamics needed for the restoration of the State of Israel. 

This re-enactment of the ride through the desert following the exact route the Australian Light Horse took in 1917 including the charge over the same ground, is compelling viewing.  This trip is having a major impact in making Israel aware of the “Gentile” sacrifice also involved in the formation of the modern state of Israel.

The documentary shows something of the unique shared history of our two Nations, 

and is available from Barry Rodgers the leader of the Australian delegation, for

$25 for the first copy, and $20 for subsequent copies including postage (within Australia). 

ABN number 31 412 629 769.

Contact email address emugully@adventureed.com.au   Phone 61 (07) 4697 6631


The film opens with that prophetic quote from Winston Churchill; “From the ends of the earth ships and men are gathering together in the Eastern Mediterranean to fulfil a destiny as yet unknown by mortal man.” The documentary shows the important part the Australian Mounted Division played in fulfilling that destiny.

The film starts in Gallipoli where the Australian Light Horse fought without their horses in the Gallipoli campaign, then moves to Israel and follows the various campaigns to free the land from the Ottoman Turks.  The Israel tour was held in conjunction with Kelvin Crombie, noted Australian author and historian, and the “Society for the preservation of WW1 history in Israel".



Payment type accepted: Visa/ Bankcard/ Mastercard, cheque or postal order.


(Qty)….. of the DVD “In the steps of the Light Horse” total cost being  $..............(see above)

Please charge to my credit card
Visa/ Bankcard/ Mastercard or by cheque/postal order enclosed (circle card type/method)

Number   _ _ _ _    _ _ _ _    _ _ _ _    _ _ _ _    Expiry Date……………..

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To order: Please print the above order form, fill in and post to Barry Rodgers, P.O. Box 1049, Toowoomba, 4350


In the steps of the Light Horse

On October 31st 1917 the Australian Light Horse galloped into history in their famous make or break charge at the Turkish defences at Beersheba. These young men mainly from rural Australia formed a most formidable force as mounted infantry. Ninety years later 70 members of the Australian Light Horse Association, mostly from rural Australia, followed in their steps, to honour, ponder and reflect.

The trip started in Turkey where the Light Horse fought without their horses in the defence of Gallipoli. Our youngest rider was eighteen year old Dan English from Yungaburra Queensland, our oldest, Ian Robertson from Greensborough Victoria, a fit octogenarian Korean War veteran. Despite the age difference the intensity and significance of our campaign welded us into a tightly knit group, where we genuinely experienced something of that great Australian attribute, mateship. The climax of our trip was a five day ride in full WW1 uniform and equipment, following the same route the Australians took in their famous trek through the desert on the way to Beersheba.

We spent 2 days in Istanbul soaking up Turkish culture and hospitality, and soon began to appreciate the special bond between the Turks and Australians. Gallipoli was a national political watershed for both Nations. “Johnny Turk” was regarded as a fair and courageous fighter and the feelings were obviously mutual.

A significant service by Padre Darryll Moran from Tuncurry, New South Wales, was held at the Ari Burnu cemetery where so many Light Horsemen are buried. It was an impressive sight, a parade of the Light Horse in uniform with the imposing Sphinx in the background. On our second day we visited the infamous site of the Nek, and were amazed at how small the battlefield was. The words of C.W. Bean came to mind when he referred to the “only dignity the 10th Light Horse could give their fallen mates when it was their turn to charge, was not to tread on their faces, their bodies lay so thickly on the ground.”

Israel and the Palestinian Campaign.
This important campaign is often overshadowed by Gallipoli and the Western Front in our Anzac History. In geo-political terms it was extremely significant, the breakthrough at Beersheba enabled the Allies to push the Ottoman Turks right out of Palestine. Many historians have made the analysis that the successful charge at Beersheba was one of the key factors in the formation of the modern State of Israel.

In many parts of this land it is as if time has stood still. We saw shepherds with their flocks, and camel trains wending their way through the desert, looking much like ships in the desert haze. We often had the sense that we were seeing through our eyes many of the same sights our forefathers would have seen.
A highlight was a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. We rose spontaneously as the skipper ran up the Australian flag. Our hearty rendition of the National Anthem followed by Waltzing Matilda rang out across the water; it was a proud moment we will not forget.

The Desert Ride.
Our aim was to ride through the desert “as they did it, where they did it, how they did it”. We were in full uniform including our slouch hats with emu plumes. We rode in our WW1 saddles and carried our bayonets together with Lee Enfield rifles supplied by the Israeli Defence Force. In sweltering thirty five degree Celsius heat we rode through the desert wadis. At night we slept on our ground sheets and had two army blankets, it was a struggle to keep warm through the freezing nights. At times the desert was hard packed sand, often quite stony, other times deep drifting sand. It gave us a fresh appreciation of what work the army farriers had to do to keep everyone on the move. In the middle of the ride we stopped at Bir Asluj a famous resting place for Allied soldiers of both world wars, the warm springs here are most refreshing.

We interacted with about three hundred school children at Bir Asluj and together with their teachers conducted a treasure hunt in collaboration with the local WW1 Historical Society. Every successful answer given on Australia`s general history and their involvement in the region in WW1, brought them closer to the cache of koala bears that were hidden. It was a truly delightful morning of good will between Arab and Israeli children, together with the Australian contingent.

We rode through the streets of Beersheba to a tumultuous welcome as thousands of Israelis young and old lined the streets behind the barricades six or seven deep. We were worried that our horses might not handle the shouting, clapping and flag waving, especially as their shod feet were skating badly on the bitumen. Perhaps it was our horsemanship, or it was by now that the horses trusted us, or perhaps they were just too tired to react. Perhaps it was something else, but were we amazed and somewhat relieved that we passed through the streets without any drama.

The service at the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery was attended by thousands, including Heads of State, and Military attaches from Australia, Turkey and the United Kingdom to name a few. It was a solemn and significant service, with an Australian Light Horse drill squad forming part of the catafalque party.

Following the services at both the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery and the Turkish Memorial, we rode out to our staging point at Beit Eschel in readiness for a re-enactment of the charge.

We started at a walk, two sections of four abreast and then moved into a trot, before cantering in formation up to the gathered crowd. Here we received a medallion and certificate from the Mayor of Beer Sheva, Yacob Terner and the Australian Ambassador James Larsen.

Barry Rodgers (from Toowoomba, Queensland) our tour leader, gave an address, pointing out that “ninety years ago our forefathers rode out from here into battle, but today we have not come at a ferocious charge with bayonets drawn. Today we have ridden with bayonets and swords sheathed and rifles slung, for us this time it is a ride for peace. It is our longing and our prayers that this part of the world will find peace.”

The Horses; the Often Forgotten Heroes.
We became very attached to our horses after just five days. It gave us a little insight as to how attached the men would have been to these faithful animals after years of service, and how hard it would be to part with them. With the exception of General Bridges horse they were not allowed back home.
We gained a fresh appreciation for that noble animal the Australian Stockhorse, known overseas as the Waler. The horses we were given in Israel, mainly Quarter Horses, and Appaloosa which was unfortunate as far as authenticity goes.

Nevertheless they did a sterling job, and as already stated we became quite attached to them, however after four days of desert riding they were pretty knocked up. They would not have coped with those conditions much longer. Those horses bred for the tough Australian environment proved vastly superior to other breeds in the harsh desert environment. The owner of the horses supplied to us was amazed that the old type Australian Stockhorse, known affectionately by many as Walers, had to endure weeks on end of those conditions. He is planning to come to Australia in 2008 and is interested in getting some of these horses for his purposes. It is pleasing to note that there are still many breeders in Australia sticking to the old heritage bloodlines enabling this part of our rich equestrian and Anzac history to be kept alive. It is worth noting that a number of breeders in Israel, including the supplier of our horses for the 90th Anniversary ride, have expressed interest in obtaining some of these horses, having learnt something of their exploits, but that’s another story.

The Australian Light Horse Association.
If you love horses and our Anzac heritage and would like to be part of keeping this important part of our heritage alive, then visit our website www.lighthorse.org.au

Official Australian Light Horse Association trip to Israel to celebrate the 90th Anniversary of the Battle of Beersheba (13 Oct - 2nd Nov 2007)

The purpose of the trip will be to commemorate the exploits and remember the sacrifice of the Australian Light Horse who played such a pivotal role in the Middle East Campaign; in particular the charge of Beersheba.

It is hoped through media coverage and the documentary that is planned to be made, the trip will give greater profile to the work of the Anzacs in the Middle East. Most Australians are aware of Gallipoli and the Western Front, but not so much is known about the Geopolitical significance of the Palestinian Campaign. This trip will also give Israelis a great appreciation for the huge “Gentile” sacrifice that was made to procure their homeland.

We are planing a 3 day ride through the desert following the route the Light Horse took to Beersheba prior to the charge. We have hired a large number of horses that will be available for this ride, and we will be camping in the desert with the horses in as authentic manner as possible.

The Society for the Heritage of WW1 in Israel, together with noted Australian historian and author, Kelvin Crombie, will provide in-depth historical insights into the exploits of the Australian Light Horse in Palestine.

The route is being researched by the Society for the Heritage of WW1 in Israel. Permission for the ride has been obtained by the Nature and Parks Authority in Israel. The project also has the support of the Mayor of Beersheba, and the Australian Ambassador in Israel.

Camping in an Oasis 1917.

The desert experience will culminate with the Beersheba day Commemorations. This includes a presentation by the Israeli WW1 Heritage Society, followed by a march with mounted Troopers through Allenby`s Square to the Beersheba War Cemetery for the main service. Then the party moves on to a service at the Turkish Memorial, before attending the unofficial opening of the impressive Memorial Park ‘to the Australian Soldier’. A re-enactment of the charge will take place on the actual plain the charge took place on, later in the day on 31st October. At this stage approximately 60 people are booked on the trip with 48 riders.

For more information on this trip, please contact the trip organiser, Barry Rodgers of Emu Gully Heritage Stockhorse Stud, emugully@adventureed.com.au