Contentious war memorial anti-graffiti panels could go

POTENTIAL IMPROVEMENTS: The contentious New Brighton War Memorial anti-graffiti panels could be removed if the Coastal-Burwood Community Board get the $200,000 it requested for the project from the city councils Long Term Plan 2018-2028. New Brighton RSA executive manager Garry House will be pleased to see them go.

New Brighton’s south ramp and the war memorial could be revamped.

The Coastal-Burwood Community Board has asked for $200,000 from the city council’s Long Term Plan 2018-2028 for the project.

The plan would include getting rid of the contentious anti-graffiti panels on the war memorial.

Board chairwoman Kim Money said it would be a “collaborative project” with the New Brighton RSA and the community, which she hopes would showcase the foreshore area better, for the national and international events which are held there.

“The idea has came about for various reasons, one being that the community and RSA were very disappointed with the look of the panels which had gone around the memorial.”

“At the same time, we have had the lovely new development to the north of the pier and we have big events that we use the space south of the pier for . . . we want to take this opportunity to re-look at that space because we are within a regeneration stage.”

Coastal-Ward city councillors Glenn Livingstone and David East have both expressed interest in supporting the project.

“It’s a place of historical significance, it’s a gathering point on Anzac Day, we have huge crowds. It does need recognition in the council’s LTP, in some way, so David and I will be pursuing that,” said Cr Livingstone.

“I will be keeping an open mind with a view to support that . . . obviously we have to balance all the needs around the city and if we can accommodate that it would be great,” said Cr East.

The $25,000 anti-vandalism panels installed last July were criticised by the RSA and people in the community who called them “ugly.”

The memorial was vandalised by graffiti in 2015.

New Brighton RSA executive manager Garry House said the money was wasted and the community was not properly consulted.

Mr House said he will be happy to see them go.

“They detract from it, they don’t add to it. In the long term, we hope that they will develop that site. Put really good lighting, more cameras, good signage and maybe move some of those obstacles like plants and trees so it’s more visible.

If the panels are removed, new security measures will be installed to deter vandalism.