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Hyde Park Memorial Questions And Answers

19 December 2005

Hyde Park Memorial Questions And Answers

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

What is the memorial for?

The New Zealand Memorial will commemorate the relationship between New Zealand and the United Kingdom and serve as a focus of remembrance of the shared sacrifice during two world wars, and other military engagements from the South African War to the present day.

Why London?
The capital is the ideal place for such a memorial as the seat of government and where there is the greatest number of ex-pat New Zealanders living. It is also home to a number of other Commonwealth memorials.

Why Hyde park Corner?
The site was suggested by English Heritage with the support of Westminster City Council. Hyde Park Corner is an important ceremonial space and along with the recently completed Australian Memorial, on the opposite corner of the site, the New Zealand Memorial will provide a much needed focus for ANZAC Day and other commemorations.

Why now?
In a globalised world it is all the more important that people are able to assert their own national identity. The development of memorials such as this reflects New Zealand’s strengthening national identity by recognising the significant part we played in wars overseas and the impact that participation had on this country. Related to this is an increasing demand by young New Zealanders, particularly when they are overseas, to express their national identity on occasions such as ANZAC Day. This memorial will provide a place for the many thousands of New Zealanders living in London to do that.

How much will it cost?
The budget for the design and construction of the memorial is $3 million or approximately £1 million.

Who designed it?
The memorial is a collaboration between Dibble Art Co and Athfield Architects Ltd, led by sculptor Paul Dibble and architect John Hardwick-Smith with Jon Rennie as the team’s London representative.

How was the design selected?
In October 2004, 12 designs teams were selected from the 86 who submitted expressions of interest. The 12 teams were invited to submit actual designs for the memorial, and from these 12 a selection panel, appointed by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage, selected the final design. Since that time, the design has been refined and submitted to Westminster City Council for planning approval. This approval has now been received.

What does it look like? What words and images are going to be on it?
The design is based around 16 bronze sculptures set out in a formation across a grassy slope overlooking Hyde Park Corner. The sculptures, which are each configured as a cross when seen from above, will feature words and images that evoke the theme of the memorial. Images of the overall design of the memorial are available on the Ministry for Culture and Heritage website: www.mch.govt.nz. The exact words and images to adorn the memorial will remain under wraps until it is unveiled.

When will it be finished?

It is hoped to complete the memorial within the next year.

ENDS

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