Christchurch War Memorial
Lancaster Gate, London W2
Erected in 1921, The Christchurch War Memorial was blown down during the hurricane of October 1987. The highly ornamented Tabernacle was saved, but the hexagonal column shaft was beyond repair and to make matters worse, the gilded bronze orb, crucifix and Corpus Christi were stolen. For the last fifteen years, the salvaged masonry has been stored by Westminster City Council.
Once cleaned, the Tabernacle was taken away from site and repaired with new stone scrolls, columns and moulded sections. New octagonal column shafts, core drilled to house a 5 metre long stainless steel reinforcement tube, were placed on a square plinth. This was laid on a 8 m³ foundation, which was specially designed to allow the whole structure to sway in the wind.
With no detailed records to refer to, the design for the orb, crucifix and Corpus Christi were based on a sketch and a single photograph. The manufacturing process included the production of a timber mock-up, patterns, moulds, final finishing and the application of 24 carat gold leaf, prior to re-fixing on site.
The programme was reduced from 11 to 6 weeks to ensure that the memorial was completed in time for the Remembrance Day services.
Practically, the erection of the memorial to a very exacting specification and precise tolerances proved very demanding and Triton were highly commended.
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