Image: circa 1905 French neo-classical design chandelier

Work to remediate and upgrade the Forrester Gallery is continuing. The work has been detailed and complex. Externally WDC staff, with expert consultants) have carried out a full review of the exterior of the building to ensure that there is no water or damp entering the building. This has required repair to the roof flashings and extensive repair to external stonework and window frames. Internally all wall linings have been replaced, a completely new electric switchboard installed and windows repaired on the main ground floor and first floor. Work still to be carried out includes the laying of new carpet, the installation of a new heating system, a new fire egress system including special fire retardant paint, and internal fire doors. The lower ground floor which houses the collections in a specially designed clean room is still being assessed by experts to ensure that it can provide satisfactory climate conditions required to keep collections safe.

We will keep you up to date with this work as it progresses. In the meantime we are also working on the Cultural Facility Development Project (CFDP)* which was paused by the Waitaki District Council in 2018. Our current brief from Council is to create a set of ranged options for the immediate upgrade of the Forrester Gallery . Work is ongoing and no decisions have been made yet, but we can tell you that one of the options includes a LIFT. Watch this space.

*find out more about the CFDP by visiting the WDC page here

Image: This circa 1905 neo-classical design chandelier has been imported from France and thanks to the generosity and support of the Friends of the Forrester and the JW Christie Trust we have purchased the chandelier and will be installing it at the top of our grand and newly painted stairwell as part of the refurbishment work.

Ingrid Cole