Fund­ing found so Tawa memo­rial back on track

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS - By KRIS DANDO

A Tawa memo­rial could be­come a re­al­ity in the next 12 months, at a cost of up to $80,000.

It was first mooted in 2008 by Tawa His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety, but the global fi­nan­cial cri­sis put paid to any plans to com­mem­o­rate the 13 men from the sub­urb who died in the Boer War (two deaths), World War I (five) and World War II (six).

But, with the ob­ser­vance this year of the cen­te­nary of the be­gin­ning of World War I, and of the Gal­lipoli land­ings next year, the time was right to try again, said his­tor­i­cal so­ci­ety chair­man Bruce Mur­ray.

‘‘It’s been talked about for some time, but the tim­ing went out the win­dow a bit in 2008 and 2009,’’ he said. ‘‘We’ve re­ceived funds from the Tawa Com­mu­nity Grant and Mana Com­mu­nity Grants Foun­da­tion, so we’re back on track.’’

The agreed site is at the north­ern end of Ox­ford St, ad­ja­cent to Grasslees Re­serve and close to the RSA.

Mur­ray said the memo­rial was in­tended to recog­nise the 13 for their ser­vice both in war and ‘‘ the pur­suit of peace’’, so it was not specif­i­cally a war memo­rial.

Plans by ar­chi­tects McKen­zie Higham show an en­clos­ing wall, seat­ing, ex­ten­sive paving and land­scap­ing.

Mur­ray said a large, mis­shapen ca­sua­r­ina tree could be re­moved to im­prove the visual im­pact on the rest of the re­serve.

‘‘We would look to re­place it with another tree, but it is some­thing that is be­ing dis­cussed,’’ he said.

It was orig­i­nally thought, that owing to the $70,000 to $80,000 price tag, the memo­rial would be built in stages, but Mur­ray said he hoped the project could be com­pleted in the com­ing months.

The decision would be made by Wellington City Coun­cil, he said.

The project was some­thing he could see the com­mu­nity get­ting be­hind.

‘‘To my mind, there is good support for it and for the memo­rial to be seen as a Tawa memo­rial.

‘‘The support and en­thu­si­asm from the coun­cil and Tawa Com­mu­nity Board has been fan­tas­tic and we are grate­ful for that.’’

The chair­man of Tawa Com­mu­nity Board, Robert Tredger, said with RSAs around the coun­try in dan­ger of clos­ing, memo­ri­als were im­por­tant to re­mem­ber those who served their coun­try.

‘‘It fits in nicely with the re­serve, a shaded area for re­flec­tion.

‘‘There was unan­i­mous support from the board and we would like to see it hap­pen sooner rather than later,’’ he said.

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