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Nelson Monument All Set For Restoration Project

posted 5 Mar 2009, 02:19 by myEdinburgh Admin   [ updated 5 Mar 2009, 02:20 ]

A £250,000 restoration of the Nelson Monument is set to start next week. The work, which will also see the famous time-ball mechanism returned to working order, is part of the on-going Twelve Monuments Restoration Project, a partnership between the City of Edinburgh Council, Edinburgh World Heritage, charitable trusts and business donations.

City Culture Leader Deidre Brock said: "By taking this action now to restore the Neslon Monument, we are preserving an important part of Edinburgh's maritime heritage for future generations.

"This major project will return the monument to its former glory and when complete, residents of Edinburgh and visitors alike will be able to look to the monument at one o' clock once again to see the impressive time-ball mechanism in action."

David McDonald, Project Manager with Edinburgh World Heritage said: "Thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund and a large number of very generous donors, I am delighted to say that work is about to start on repairing this important Edinburgh landmark.

"The Nelson Monument is one of the most prominent buildings in the city, and the one' o clock time-ball is a great Edinburgh institution. It is fantastic to be able to keep these city traditions going, which all go to make Edinburgh such a unique place to live and visit."

Colin McLean, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, added: "Not only does the Nelson Monument afford one of the best panoramic views of Edinburgh but it also houses one of the city's more unusual customs in its time-ball.

"It's great news that work is about to start on this extraordinary piece of our heritage ensuring that it continues to delight visitors from all over the world for years to come."

The biggest challenge will be the restoration of the time-ball itself, which weighs an estimated 762kgs, about the same as a small car. The ball will be removed with a crane and its internal wooden structure carefully restored. The 150-year old gearing mechanism will also be repaired. Once complete, the time-ball will again operate at one o'clock on a daily basis.

Work will also include stonework repairs and re-pointing with lime mortar. Most important will be the stonework around an internal corroding iron band, which has already caused some stone to flake off at parapet level. The top parapet will be partially taken down and rebuilt in the course of the works.

David Hicks
Communications Manager
Edinburgh World Heritage

Tel: 0131 200 7723