Written answers

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Department of Defence

National Memorials

9:00 pm

Photo of Michael MulcahyMichael Mulcahy (Dublin South Central, Fianna Fail)
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Question 78: To ask the Minister for Defence when the national memorial to commemorate deceased members of the Defence Forces who have died in service will be unveiled; the concept behind the design, the estimated cost; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34145/07]

Photo of Willie O'DeaWillie O'Dea (Minister, Department of Defence; Limerick East, Fianna Fail)
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The Memorial designed by Mr. Brian King is a pyramid shape made primarily of granite slabs resting on a steel frame interspaced with toughened glass panels. I understand that Mr. King chose the pyramid shape because of its historical references to burial and because he sees the shape as reflecting that of an "army tent". While its external symmetry is simple in form, on closer inspection the observer becomes aware that in the tent structure there are figures representing members of the Defence Forces. Four Defence Force personnel in relief are cast in bronze, representing the Air Corps, Army, and Naval Service. Both permanent and reserve, will be included. The four sentries stand to attention guarding an eternal flame that emanates from the Defence Forces Badge. The dimensions of the memorial will be 4 metres by 4 metres to a height of 4.8 metres.

It is not possible to give an exact cost of the project at this point but it is estimated at €260,000. It is expected that the project will be completed by the end of March 2008.

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