Watch: Dave Dobbyn delivers haunting Passchendaele rendition of Welcome Home, in town of Ypres

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1 NEWS, NZN

The Kiwi classic song, Welcome Home, has been proudly performed by Dave Dobbyn at Passchendaele commemorations, filling the grounds of a Belgium war memorial.

Today marks 100 years since 846 Kiwi soldiers lost their lives in the Battle of Passchendaele.
Source: 1 NEWS

Today marks 100 years since 846 Kiwi soldiers lost their lives in the Battle of Passchendaele as they passed through Ypres. 

This morning  (NZT) at Menin Gate in the Belgian town, commemorations for what is now described as "New Zealand's darkest day" began.

In one of New Zealand's darkest days, 846 Kiwi soldiers lost their lives in the World War I battle.
Source: 1 NEWS

Dave Dobbyn played his guitar and sang a haunting version of his hit song Welcome Home at the ceremony after a haka was performed to welcome guests to the site. 

The memorial is of great significance as it would have been the last sight of civilisation the young kiwi soldiers saw in 1917, before they entered the battlefields of the Western Front known for its mud, blood and death.

Speaker of the NZ House of Representatives David Carter, Environment Minister Nick Smith, Auckland Mayor Phil Goff, Victoria Cross-winner Willie Apiata and NZ Defence boss Lieutenant General Tim Keating were among those who attended.

During World War I 10 per cent of New Zealand's population, some 100,000 people - half of the country's working male population - travelled to fight for Britain.

Two-thirds would become casualties, and one in five would never return home.

On October 12, 1917, New Zealand suffered its greatest loss of life in a single day, as some 960 soldiers were either killed or mortally wounded at Passchendaele.

Back home, a national ceremony of remembrance will be held at Wellington's Pukeahu National War Memorial Park this afternoon, which will be streamed live by 1 NEWS NOW.

1 NEWS Europe Correspondent, Joy Reid will have the full version of Dave Dobbyn's performance later today. 

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