Today's Daily Telegraph suggests the City is not committed to the Hyde Park Anzac Memorial. This is completely false.
The City of Sydney is investing more than $24 million restoring war memorials, maintaining Hyde Park, and creating Australia's first memorial to honour indigenous servicemen and women. The Daily Telegraph was made aware of this spending, but chose to ignore it.
On 10 September last year, the City wrote to the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet seeking to confirm existing funding arrangements for Memorial's redevelopment. The City is still awaiting a response. Ahead of the Anzac centenary the City spent $173,000 on heritage restoration work to 10 war memorials across Sydney. These include:
- First World Memorial to Pyrmont-Ultimo Servicemen in Pyrmont;
- Oddfellows Memorial in Hyde Park;
- Emden gun in Hyde Park from German Ship SMS Emden, sunk by HMAS Sydney;
- WWI Soldiers Memorial in Woolloomooloo;
- World War I memorial in Redfern Park;
- The Artillery Gun in Redfern Park;
- Newtown War Memorial on King Street;
- Paddington War Memorial on Oxford Street;
- The Cenotaph in Martin Place; and
- Archibald Memorial Fountain, Hyde Park.
With the support of the RSL, the City is also looking forward to launching on 31 March, a public art tribute to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander service men and women in Hyde Park. The City invested more than $500,000 in the project.
The City has also provided almost $70,000 in sponsorship to the RSL, History Council and other groups for Anzac Day related events and activities. This includes $20,000 for outdoor screens and audio visual equipment at Martin Place so that more people can take part in this year's dawn service.
The City has spent $5.6 million in the past 10 years on Hyde Park, with $23.5 million committed for the next 10 years, including the avenue of trees framing the Anzac Memorial and supporting public domain works, tree replacement and works to support the NSW Government project to upgrade Museum Station.
Operational expenditure on Hyde Park for the past 10 years was $17.56 million, with $10 million allocated for the next 10 years.