Outrage has greeted a proposal by the City of Cape Town to move the Cenotaph war memorial, which has been in Adderley Street since 1924, to make way for a MyCiTi bus station.
The proposal to move the Cenotaph to the Grand Parade was made in a heritage report commissioned by the city and published by Bridget O’Donoghue, a heritage consultant.
According to the report, the relocation site was proposed after civil and professional organisations were consulted.
But public reaction on Monday indicated that moving the Cenotaph is more contentious than suggested by the report.
“Moving the Cenotaph to a glorified parking lot and a third-rate flea market is not the way to go,” said West Beach resident Agi Orfanos. “Converting our main city boulevard (Adderley and Heerengracht) into a bus station is a disgrace.”
A Stellenbosch historian who specialises in World War I, Professor Bill Nasson, called the plan to move the Cenotaph an “appalling” idea.
“The point is that the Cenotaph’s present location is symbolically significant,” said Nasson.
“It’s close to where the shoreline would have been before the Foreshore reclamation, so close to the docks, ships, the sea, and presently opposite the railway station, again significant – perfectly situated to reflect the city’s connections with the world of the world wars.”
The city has undertaken to consider all public comments on its proposal and comments can be sent to O’Donoghue at 021 789 0222. - Cape Argus