National

Remembrance Day gets 3000 in Melbourne

By AAP Newswire

A crowd of 3000 people has gathered to mark 85 years since Melbourne's Shrine of Remembrance opened to a crowd of 300,000.

"Remembrance Day is an inclusive day of reflection allowing people across our community to contemplate their shared humanity, revealed to all through the suffering endured in war," Shrine chief executive Dean Lee said on Monday.

The 2019 crowd was just one per cent of the 1934 crowd despite Melbourne's population being six times what it was then.

"Since the 2000s, crowds at official Remembrance Day state services have rarely exceeded a few hundreds," Flinders University historian Dr Romain Fathi said.

"By contrast, those attending Anzac Day services are counted by the thousands and recently, the tens of thousands."

Dr Fathi says governments have spent significant amounts of money glorifying Anzac Day on the former Western Front and at Gallipoli, overshadowing Remembrance Day.

"In Australia, Anzac Day has addressed the question of the meaning of the war far better than Remembrance Day, and that is a distinctive Australian characteristic," Dr Fathi said.

"In western Europe, however, Remembrance Day remains a major commemorative event."