In early 1917 Margaret was granted a commission to design and create an ANZAC memorial gate for The Coburg Historical Society, in partnership with Coburg PrimarySchool in dedication to the memory of the thirty-five pupils of the school who lost their lives during World War One.
There once stood an Avenue of Honour dedicated to the memory of these pupils. The school’s choice of trees was significant. Trees represent growth, life and longevity. Planted as seeds and saplings, they would grow older, bigger, stronger in a way that the men they represent could not. Great care was taken to look after these trees but by the early 1960s the avenue of trees were cut down for further development in the school-grounds. As part of a grant received from an ANZAC Centenary project the committee commissioned Margaret to design and create a cortensteel double gate for Elm Street representing the memory of these pupils who attended the school in the 1890s and early 1900s who died in World War One. Important motifs to incorporate in the design of the gates were the thirty-five soldiers and elm trees, wattle, gum leaves and poppies.
The thirty-five soldiers cut out in silhouette and leaning against the thirty-five elm trees represent the thirty-five former pupils
Wattle tree in flower to symbolise Australia, regrowth and re-generation
The poppies are the International symbol of World War One. They also symbolise Remembrance Day and ANZAC Day in Australia.
The World War 1 Centenary Anniversary Memorial Gates were completed latter in 1917 and officially opened on 10th October 1917 in an school assemble.