Heritage & Monuments

The Cenotaph

New Zealand / The Pacific

The Cenotaph was inaugurated 25 April 1931 and is the focus of Anzac Day commemorations for the Capital. It features a mounted figure called ‘The Will to Peace’, described as ‘Pegasus spurning underfoot the victor’s spoils of war and rising into the heavens, enables his rider to emerge from the deluge of blood and tears, and to receive the great spiritual assurance of peace.’Previously a somewhat unconnected sculptural island near a busy intersection, in 2013 in time for the centenary commemorations for World War 1 a partnership between the Wellington City Council and central government developed a new staircase and water feature leading up to the Parliament Buildings. The works also include repairs to the cenotaph surface materials and creation of a square to create a ceremonial space.A new in-ground artwork by Joe Sheehan leads pedestrians across the plaza, along the path of Waipiro Stream (now underground), with pieces of jade laid into the paving. The artwork includes the sound of flowing water from speakers set in the ground.

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