My original photographs of the cenotaph were taken in July 2008 at a point when I never realised that I would need better images, I rectified that in October 2011 and was quite surprised as the area had changed since my previous visit.
The Cenotaph is in the block between the former Johannesburg City Hall (now Guateng Legislature) and the public library, and is bounded by Market and President Streets (this area is now called Beyers Naude Square). It was unveiled by the Earl Of Athlone on 10 October 1926, and is a replica of the Cenotaph in London. It may be found at Google Earth Co-ordinates 26° 12.274’S, 28°2.406’E.
It is similar in design to the Cenotaph in Hong Kong which is also based on the London Cenotaph.
The Cenotaph was “rebranded” in 2002 with the plaque above, and Remembrance Services are held here every year in November.
The steps of the former Johannesburg City Hall used to be have “Lest We Forget” and “Opdat Ons Nie Vergeet Nie” inscribed on them, as well as wreaths on the pillars. Unfortunately the wreaths have been long stolen.
It was announced on the Heritage Portal that the Cenotaph had been vandalised by some idiot with spray paint. It is hoped that the perpetrator was caught on CCTV and is brought to book as quickly as possible. The Cenotaph is the centre of Remembrance in Johannesburg, and this desecration is disgusting.
Fortunately the Cenotaph was cleaned up in time for the annual Remembrance Day Parade.
© DRW 2011-2018. Created 07/06/2011. Images replaced 09/10/2011, edited 04/01/2012. Moved to blog 24/01/2014, updated 15/10/2018