Historical artifacts to be restored

Johann Kruger from the SA Legion shows the condition of one of the field guns outside the Durban City Hall.

TWO field guns on display on either side of the Durban City Hall which fall under the city’s heritage resources, are to be restored.

The field guns were used in the Anglo-Boer War by the Royal Field Artillery and were presented to the Natal Field Artillery. According to Natal Field Artillery Captain John Johnston-Webber both guns are sadly dilapidated and are currently on loan from the military.

“The municipality undertook to maintain them and therefore it is for the municipality to do so,” he said

Resident, Jeremy Hurter, who noticed the sorry state of the historical artefacts and alerted Berea Mail, said the field guns were part of the tourist attractions of Durban.

“Both wooden wheels have rotted totally off the one gun and some steel rings have been stolen, probably for scrap. The guns themselves are also extremely rusty and need to either be preserved or removed,” he said.

EThekwini Head of Communications, Tozi Mthethwa, said: the city’s Department of Libraries and Heritage, had taken stock of all its heritage assets that required major repairs and that the two field guns formed part of the heritage resources they sought to restore. She said the Department was working closely with the South African Military History Society on the project.

ALSO READ: Vandals strip historical cenotaph of brass plaques

Sinothi Thabethe, director of the Durban Local History Museums, said the aim was to have a proper repair and maintenance plan for all heritage assets. She said the municipality would allocate a budget for the repair and maintenance of all assets such as statues and plaques.

“I have met with our Insurance Division to have all our memorials insured as the first step towards realising the dream of making sure that our heritage resources are well taken care of,” said Thabethe.

 

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  AUTHOR
Lauren Walford
Journalist

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