THE HIGHLAND COUNCIL Agenda Item 9 INVERNESS CITY COMMITTEE Report No 96/08 8 DECEMBER 2008 Faith, Hope and Charity Statues Report by Inverness City Manager SUMMARY This report updates Members regarding the costs for reinstating the Faith Hope and Charity statues at the two locations that received the most votes from the public consultation – (1) Ness Bank Church Gardens and (2) The Castle Embankment (West facing) 1. Introduction 1.1 Report No. ICC58/08 dated 25 July 2008 by the Inverness City Manager was presented to Inverness City Committee on 4th August 2008. This reported on the consultation that had been conducted and the outcome of possible options for the re-instatement of the Faith Hope and Charity statues. Ness Bank Church received the most public votes as their first choice location with 64% of those who voted choosing it. The Castle Embankment (West facing) received the most public votes as their second choice location with 67% of those who voted choosing it. A detailed breakdown of cost for installation was required before any decision could be taken on the location. This should be: i. Full installation costs at both sites; and ii. Costs for the statues being mounted on one single or three separate plinths. 2. Possible Options for Re-instatement 2.1 Ness Bank This location would reward visitors who walk along either side of the river banks to and from the islands. Both architecturally and culturally there is a harmony between the Faith Hope and Charity statues and the adjacent Ness Bank Church with an opportunity to place a plaque with interpretive text about the statues. This is a busy public location which should be less likely to be affected by vandalism or interference with the statues. The railings around the landscaped area could remain in place as an additional deterrent to any interference. A plinth or plinths of about 1.8 metres should be constructed to facilitate viewing the statues from below in accordance with the original concept. Advice from TEC Service is that the Ness Bank garden location would be suitable for erecting the statues and readily accessible for the associated construction work. Analysis during the River Ness Flood study shows medium dense sand and gravel that would accommodate the statues. It will be necessary to commission Structural and Civil Engineering Consultants to undertake a Feasibility Study which includes a Concept Design and Budget Cost. 2.2 Castle Embankment This location would enable the Faith Hope and Charity statues to be viewed quite clearly from up river, down river and both sides of the river. A comprehensive geotechnical investigation of the ground conditions on the embankment will be an essential prerequisite to any consideration of a foundation, base and plinth in this location. With such a steep embankment of around 45 degrees, it is essential the 9 tonne statues plus the base are set on a secure foundation that is anchored into the hillside. The nature of this location makes it a far more difficult and expensive option for re- locating the statues, likely to involve the use of a heavy duty specialist crane and possibly temporary closure of Castle Road. Advice from TEC Services and Housing & Property Services is that it will be necessary to commission Structural and Civil Engineering Consultants to undertake a Feasibility Study which includes a Concept Design and Budget Cost. 3. Cost of Re-instatement 3.1 Design and Cost It is impossible to provide cost estimates for re-locating the Faith Hope and Charity statues at either location without comprehensive analysis of the sites and an appropriate design and cost exercise. It will be necessary to commission Structural and Civil Engineering Consultants with expertise in soil and landscape analysis that could assess the sites; consider the construction requirements at each site; design the appropriate foundations and plinths; and determine the corresponding costs. The costs for re-location of the statues can only be calculated after the design has been completed and offered to contractors for tender. Given the nature of the sites, re-instatement of the Faith Hope and Charity statues at the Castle Embankment (West facing) site is likely to be considerably more than at the Ness Bank garden site. 4. Resource Implications 4.1 The cost for Structural and Civil Engineering Consultants to design and cost the re- instatement of the Faith Hope and Charity statues for both of the two locations may be up to £10,000 in total. 5. RECOMMENDATION Members are invited to authorise up to £10,000 from the Common Good Fund Revenue Budget to enable Structural and Civic Engineering Consultants to be commissioned to undertake a Feasibility Study which includes a Concept Design and Budget cost for the re-instatement of the Faith Hope and Charity Statues at the two locations. Signature: Designation: Inverness City Manager Date: 20 November 2008 Author/Reference: Charles Stephen CS/WM260608 Background Papers: Appendix 1 Faith, Hope and Charity – Options for reinstatement A variety of options were researched and the following potential options for reinstating the statues in the city have been chosen by the public; Most voted for first choice location: Ness Bank Church Land owned and insured by Highland Council. Statues could be placed on 4ft plinths in the garden area to reduce risk of vandalism. Garden area could be re-designed to suit the statues placing. Most voted for second choice location: Castle Embankment (West facing) Land owned and insured by Highland Council. Low risk of vandalism and statues able to be viewed from a distance as originally desired. Sympathetic lighting could be installed. Statues could be set into the bank on a concrete ledge.