Tower to commemorate WWI soldiers
A new installation to commemorate those who served in World War One has been unveiled in the Auckland Domain.
Te Pourewa Whakamaharatanga, The Tower of Remembrance was unveiled on September 20 outside the Auckland War Memorial Museum.
The tower is covered in hundreds of solid brass quatrefoils, similar to those used in The Art of Remembrance fundraiser for St David’s Church on Khyber Pass Rd.
Auckland Museum’s director of collection and research David Reeves says the project is a fitting collaboration.
‘‘As a war memorial, it is fitting that the museum collects not only historical examples of commemoration but contemporary examples too.
‘‘The art installation captured public imagination so strongly, and it is an honour to be able to display these artworks in a new setting, acknowledging a local commemorative project and continuing to remember those who lost their lives in World War I,’’ Reeves says.
It was unveiled exactly 100 years ago to the day Sergeant James Rankin was killed in action on the Somme in Northern France
Rankin was from Grafton and his family were members of St David’s Church, he died fighting in the Battle of the Somme on September 20, 1916 and was honoured at the unveiling ceremony. His name is also on the roll of honour.
Paul Baragwanath, curator of the St David’s Art of Remem- brance project, says members of Rankin’s family attended.
‘‘Sergeant Rankin represents not only the St David’s men whose lives were taken, but the loss of all New Zealanders who died or were affected by the First World War.
‘‘St David’s Church was built, much like Auckland War Memorial Museum, as a soldier’s memorial so that we would never forget,’’ Baragwanath says.
The quatrefoils were designed by New Zealand artist Max Gimblett for St David’s Church and were then auctioned to fundraise for the church’s restoration.
The church was built in 1927 as a place of remembrance of the First World War and became known as the ‘‘soldiers’ church’’.
Baragwanath says there is still $6 million in funding needed to restore the church.
The Tower of Remembrance was unveiled in the Auckland Domain on September 20.