Brighter fu­ture for dam­aged memo­ri­als


For decades they stood un­touched by the pass­ing of time as a trib­ute to those who lost their lives in World War I and II.

Both the Sed­don and Ward War Memo­ri­als were dam­aged in the 2016 Kaiko¯ura earth­quake.

But vi­tal re­pair work cost­ing around $50,000 has helped safe­guard their fu­ture with work to the Ward War Me­mo­rial com­plete and work on the Awa­tere War Me­mo­rial in Sed­don near­ing its end.

Both should be ready in time for this year’s AN­ZAC Day cel­e­bra­tions on April 25.

Tak­ing pride of place at the en­trance to the Flaxbourne Do­main on SH1, the white stone Ward me­mo­rial suf­fered dis­lodged rock-work and the con­crete base was in need of strength­en­ing.

Sig­nif­i­cant dam­age to the up­per re­tain­ing walls and the arch­way at the bot­tom of the site left the Sed­don me­mo­rial in a poor state.

Marl­bor­ough District Coun­cil staff have spent around $30,000 safe­guard­ing the fu­ture of the im­por­tant com­mu­nity trib­utes.

A spokes­woman says work started in mid-March with con­trac­tors from Down­ers Open Space team tak­ing on the work.

‘‘It was im­por­tant to have them ready for An­zac Day,’’ she says.

Costs have been met in part by Coun­cil and the Suther­land Self Help Trust which awarded $10,000 to each of the projects.

Projects help­ing com­mu­ni­ties to re­cover from the earth­quake ben­e­fited in this year’s fund­ing round with the trust award­ing $895,000 in grants this year, in­clud­ing $50,000 to­wards strength­en­ing Ward’s com­mu­nity hall.

Also known as the Flaxbourne fallen sol­diers me­mo­rial, the Ward me­mo­rial was un­veiled on Novem­ber 21 1922 by Lady Jel­li­coe.

It was cre­ated by stone­ma­son Char­lie Butt who used lime­stone quar­ried from the hills be­hind the do­main.

The spokes­woman says the orig­i­nal stones were able to be put back into place.

Im­prove­ments to the Sed­don me­mo­rial will also in­clude two new spot­lights which will light up the me­mo­rial overnight.

‘‘On the Ward me­mo­rial some of the stones were dis­lodged but did not need re­plac­ing but in Sed­don some will need re­plac­ing and the stone will come from a quarry where the orig­i­nal stone came from.

‘‘It needs quite a bit of strength­en­ing work and part of the rea­son we have put in so much ef­fort is that it be­ings com­mu­ni­ties back to­gether.

‘‘These com­mu­ni­ties get huge turn outs for their An­zac ser­vices and we want peo­ple to be proud of them’’ she says.


The Awa­tere War Me­mo­rial in Sed­don was closed af­ter suf­fer­ing dam­age in the 2016 Kaik­oura earth­quake.

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