Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele

Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele Memorial garden begins journey to Passchendaele

At a dawn ceremony, components of the New Zealand Memorial Garden were farewelled on their journey to the Passchendaele Museum in Zonnebeke, Belgium.

On a voyage that will take 40 days, the prefabricated elements of the garden and local materials are being shipped to Belgium ready for installation in the museum’s grounds. The components will form one of seven poppy-shaped memorial gardens being developed to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Passchendaele in October.

The hard elements of the garden have been produced and prefabricated in various locations across NZ. They include the aggregate base, 846 bronze inlays and a concrete memory column pierced with 2700 pinholes that represent the casualties at the end of the first day of battle. Timaru bluestone pavers will form a flat curve on the ground into which bronze letters will be set, spelling out phrases from the hymn, Poppies and Pohutakawa, as a tribute to veterans and their families.

The design, by Boffa Miskell landscape architect and senior principal, Cathy Challinor, was selected by the New Zealand Passchendaele Society to be the garden that would represent New Zealand’s contribution and sacrifice in the Battle of Passchendaele. The design responds to three themes: remembrance through plant symbolism, remembrance through visual art and remembrance through literature.

For Cathy, the project has been a career highlight and, in seeing the garden begin its journey to Passchendaele, she felt a little piece of her was going with it.

For further information please contact Cathy Challinor

10 April 2017