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National War Memorial’s Hall of Memories closes

Thursday 1 August

National War Memorial’s Hall of Memories closes

The Ministry for Culture and Heritage has today closed the National War Memorial’s Hall of Memories due to an assessment which has shown the building’s strength does not meet the 34% building code minimum. The hall currently meets 20-25% of the code.

The Hall of Memories will be closed for a period of two weeks, during which time the Ministry will evaluate whether the public can safely be allowed access. Engineers have been engaged to design earthquake strengthening which would be carried out as soon as possible.

The Carillon tower, which has been undergoing earthquake strengthening over the past few months, now meets well in excess of the building code minimum, at 67%.

Neither the Hall of Memories nor the Carillon encountered any damage in Wellington’s recent 6.5 earthquake.

Ministry chief executive, Lewis Holden, says the closure is an important step in order to secure the building for the future and maintain public safety.

“The National War Memorial plays a special part in Wellington, and New Zealand’s history, and it’s essential that we not only maintain its physical integrity but also make sure the many visitors to the memorial are safe”.

The National War Memorial Park, which is currently under development will be open by Anzac day 2015, when it is expected the National War Memorial will have completed its earthquake strengthening.

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