Miranda Anzac memorial on the move

Turning the sod: (Left to right) Sutherland mayor Steve Simpson, James Gardner (heritage services) and Miranda RSL Sub-branch president Bruce Grimley turn the sod for the start of work on the new Miranda RSL war memorial. The memorial is being moved 50 metres from Central Avenue to a new site within Seymour Shaw Park. Picture: John Veage
Turning the sod: (Left to right) Sutherland mayor Steve Simpson, James Gardner (heritage services) and Miranda RSL Sub-branch president Bruce Grimley turn the sod for the start of work on the new Miranda RSL war memorial. The memorial is being moved 50 metres from Central Avenue to a new site within Seymour Shaw Park. Picture: John Veage

WORK has begun on recloating Miranda RSL's historical war memorial to a safer and more accessible site in Seymour Shaw Park.

It is expected to be in place in time for Anzac Day.

The heritage-listed sandstone memorial is the site of NSW's largest Anzac Day dawn service outside the Sydney central business district, often attracting more than 5000 people.

The memorial was built in 1918 to honour residents who served in World War I.

It was originally in the grounds of the old Miranda Public School and was moved to its present site in the cul-de-sac at the end of Central Avenue in 1968, when the school site was sold to the developers of the then Miranda Fair shopping centre.

The memorial is now being moved 50 metres north towards Seymour Shaw Park, and will be surrounded by landscaping and gardens.

It will have extra space to accommodate the growing numbers of students and young families who attend the Anzac dawn service.

"With events such as Anzac Day of such great cultural and national significance, access to the Miranda memorial should accommodate crowds and ensure the safety of pedestrians," said Sutherland Shire mayor Steve Simpson.

Because of the memorial's "heritage item" status, a heritage architect has been employed to oversee the project and a qualified stone mason to relocate the large sandstone structure.

The council has spent $173,000 on the project, the state government through its community partnerships fund donated a $40,000 grant, and the Department of Veterans Affairs gave $4000 towards the memorial.

The Miranda RSL Sub-branch raised another $65,000, bringing the total works cost to just over $280,000.

WW I centenary attacts funds for projects

SUTHERLAND Shire is preparing to recognise the centenary of Australia’s involvement in World War I with three big projects to be built in local parks.

A memorial in Parc Menai and the installation of sculptures at the Miranda and Peace Park memorials have been nominated for funding under the Australian Government’s Centenary Local Grants Program.

Local MPs are responsible for submitting applications to the Department of Veterans Affairs by May 30.

The Menai and Sutherland Districts Business Chamber of Commerce has proposed installing a memorial costing $50,000 at Parc Menai near the rotunda.

There has also been a proposal for a two-metre bronze sculpture of a soldier to go on the existing memorial in Peace Park, at an estimated cost of $100,000.

The Miranda RSL Sub-branch is about to begin moving its existing war memorial in Central Avenue, Miranda, to a site about 50 metres away, in Seymour Shaw Reserve (see story, left).

The club has raised funds for the relocation and has asked for additional funding  for a statue to go on top of the relocated memorial, replacing an original statue that went missing many years ago.

Sutherland Shire Council is expected to provide in-principle support for the projects.

■ What do you think would make a good Anzac centenary project  for the shire?

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