The Returned & Services League of Australia (New South Wales Branch) North Bondi Sub-Branch has donated a new war memorial to their local communities of North Bondi and Bondi Beach.
Construction, which was completed by Whitcon Pty Ltd, began on 18 August, 2011 with the removal of an old dilapidated war memorial located on Scarborough Crescent Reserve adjacent to the North Bondi RSL Club and North Bondi Italian Food restaurant.
The new war memorial will be officially opened in a formal ceremony held on Sunday, 27 November 2011, at 9:00 a.m.
Valued at over $430,000, the new war memorial was designed by Bryan Bathgate of Curtain Bathgate & Somers Architects and the commissioned sculpture is by De Emmi Creative Solutions.
The sculptural essence of the new memorial is to symbolize the solidarity, unison, courage and spirit of the Australian mateship at war. The sailor, soldier and airman/woman are represented in a palette of materials:
- Stainless steel blades 300mm width representing the military serviceman /woman of the ADF triservices;
- Concrete curved blocks 150mm width x 300 high representing battlement;
- 20mm x300mm glass inserts to the concrete block between the stainless steel blades representing the spirit and eternal flame presence when lit;
- All collectively arranged from 800mm high to 2400mm and bolted together to create the structural integrity of the sculpture that provides the foundation of the memorial representing strength and unison in numbers.
- The use of aged bronze represents the triservices in the form of the service badges of the Royal Australian Navy, Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force;
- Three bronze cladded pillars with a montage of iconic images from each Australian Defence Force service.
- War diary excerpts from all wars and conflicts that Australia has been engaged in are located through the memorial sculpture in the form of bronze plaques which provide a narrative and personal experience of the memorial.
Scarborough Crescent Reserve is an active community space at the north end of the world famous Bondi Beach and the concept of a set piece memorial has close parallels with endless town centres in Europe as opposed to a more reserved tradition of the lone memorial set in a scenic but isolated location.
The new war memorial is a substantial improvement to the north end of Bondi Beach. On 16 August, 2011, the Waverley Council at their meeting unanimously voted to excise a portion of the area of Scarborough Crescent Reserve, where the new war memorial now stands, from a uniform public road and apply to the Department of Lands to have the area designated as a war memorial trust and appoint the North Bondi RSL Sub-Branch its custodian.
More photos from the War Memorial
STRONG SENSE OF PRIDE
The League and its 109 members of North Bondi RSL Sub-Branch, which include veterans from WW2 through the present-day wars as well as currently serving active duty Australian Defence Force members, feel a strong sense of pride, privilege and honour that our local leaders within Waverley Council are applying to the Department of Lands to designate the area as an official war memorial trust and appoint the North Bondi RSL Sub-Branch as its custodian.
The significance of officially opening the war memorial on 27 November, 2011 is that it is the 70th anniversary of the end of the Siege of Tobruk.
The North Bondi Sub-Branch of the Returned & Services League of Australia was founded in 1944 by some of the original Rats of Tobruk.