2017 Centenary of the Battle of Messines Ridge Medal
Based on a wall sculpture by Michael Meszaros this bronze medal has a limited mintage of just 250. The executive producer of the Australian film Beneath Hill 60, Ross Thomas commissioned the medal that is based on the sculpture by Michael Meszaros displayed at the Army Museum North Queensland (Townsville). Belgian sculptor Paul Huybrechts completed the medal.
The rising sun design on the obverse of this medal reads “CENTENARY. BATTLE OF MESSINES RIDGE,7TH JUNE 1917 1ST AUSTRALIAN TUNNELLING COY. 1916-1919” with “AUSTRALIAN COMMONWEALTH MILITARY FORCES” in the rising sun emblem.
The reverse “..carefully depicted by Meszaros in his artwork. On the relief and on the medal, a miner sits on a horizontal plank with a moveable seat, using his body weight to push a spade into the tunnel wall and lever off chunks of clay………Small details of the artwork tell big stories. A stethoscope-type instrument with two sensors is a geophone, which was used to estimate how far away tunnellers were from where the German enemy tunnellers were digging.” (Quotes have been reprinted with permission from www.plus61j.net.au) Read the comprehensive article here.
80 millimetre bronze medal mintage 250
The Meszaros reverse is also found on another of Huybrechts medals with an Australian Coat of Arms obverse.