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Page last updated at 09:14 GMT, Tuesday, 29 September 2009 10:14 UK
Norwich's war memorial gardens
Artist's impression of the new memorial

The new memorial is expected to be open by Remembrance Day 2010

The £2.6m renovation of the Norwich memorial garden, opposite City Hall, started on Monday, 28 September, 2009.

The Grade II listed memorial, on which renovation is hoped to be complete by Remembrance Day 2010, has been closed to the public since November 2004.

"It's really good that we have been able to get on site so quickly," said Steve Morphew, council leader.

Damage has meant that the gardens on the surface and the memorial under croft need total restoration.

The revamp, which is predicted to take around 60 weeks, is part of an £8m government housing and regeneration grant received by Norwich City Council.

The project team expect the new structure to last at least 100 years.

"With a large and complex project like this, there will inevitably be some disruption," said Steve.

"I would like to remind people that Norwich Market will be open just as usual throughout the work, so please do continue to shop there," he added.

From 12 October, 2009, St Peter's Street will become one way for vehicles, with traffic flowing from Bethel Street to Gaol Hill. Visitors to The Forum will be able to access the car park via the Little Bethel Street side of the building.

Damage

Since their closure in 2004, the gardens have suffered damage and fallen into disrepair.

The under croft of the gardens, once used by market stallholders, has also seen the consequence of neglect and is potentially hazardous.

"It's so weak that if we had crowd loading here, there's a potential that people could fall through," said Gary Thompson, project manager.

View how the Norwich memorial gardens will look by Remebrance Day 2010

Gardens

The memorial gardens were built in 1938 as part of the City Hall scheme, designed by CH James and SR Pierce.

They were created as an 'oasis of peace' in the heart of the city centre and were originally enclosed with walls and gates.

The current gardens were designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, with the memorial having relocated from the lower end of the Guildhall, where it originally stood in 1928.

The new gardens will be turned to face St Peters Street, which runs between the memorial and City Hall, rather than its current aspect facing Norwich Market.




SEE ALSO
In pictures: Battle of Britain parade
14 Sep 09 |  History
Norfolk at war: 70 years since WWII
03 Sep 09 |  History

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