About 50 residents in the village of Bodalla on the South Coast, attended an ANZAC commemorative service at the town war memorial on Saturday.
The Anzac Day service overseen by the Moruya RSL sub branch is the first to be held in Bodalla since 1974 and was instigated by a couple of Bodalla women to draw attention to the neglected war memorial.
Former Moruya High School teacher, Janine Holden, said she first came up with the idea of sprucing up the Bodalla War Memorial following the devastating bush fires when she became aware there was really nowhere in the community for crowds to meet.
"I thought the Bodalla War Memorial was a forgotten place," she said.
Meanwhile Megan Small, proprietor of the Downward Dog Café located across the highway from the memorial, said she got totally frustrated looking across the road at the memorial that was completely neglected.
"For months the tattered flag hung upside down, it was not a good look so I started hassling council and after not getting a response I decided to draw up a basic plan that included sprucing up the vacant land behind the memorial, with some seating and gardens.
"That was not enough for council, they wanted me to get the plans professionally drawn up and said I needed permission from the RSL, basically I was just getting the run around," she said.
"I did however manage to get a new flag that is now flying the right way up and as I look across the road at the memorial with all the flowers, it looks much better today.
"As it happened, one day Janine Holden came into the café and we started talking about the neglected memorial and what could be done that might possibly drawn attention to the issue," Megan said.
Ms Holden said all she could think about were the three 'Rs' - Reflect, Rejuvunate and Rejoice, and, with that aim in mind, approached Kevin Setter, president of the Moruya RSL sub branch for their help.
"Mr Setter told me there were some grants that might be available to help raise money for the monument and suggested they kick off their plans with a small Anzac service in Bodalla, the day before Anzac Day."
The commemoration was well attended with locals lingering long after the service to catch up with friends.
"It was really good to see people attending, there was definitely a sense of community pride," Ms Small said. "I think it will grow and that will help put more pressure on council to help."
Mr Setter said the RSL couldn't spend money on parks and their surrounds, only on monuments.
"We can however give them moral support and help in anyway we can," he said.
Ms Holden said now they had started a Bodalla Anzac Service she had three stages planned.
"Stage one is to fix the memorial and include the war veterans names from Nerrigundah," she said.
"Stage two will require help from community volunteers to help fix up the memorial garden and seating.
"The third stage will be involving Bodalla School children researching and telling the stories of our veterans."