NSW Public Works Minister’s Stonework Program
In December 2014, the Minister’s Stonework Program team undertook a detailed condition assessment of the Sydney Lysicrates Monument. The team found that some of the sandstone elements were in poor condition, and developed a conservation program for short, medium and long term repairs.
The monument was cleaned using gentle non-invasive methods and the eroded mortar joints have been repointed to prevent water damage to the stonework. Fine cracks, located on the splendidly proportioned fluted columns have been carefully patched to blend in and match the original stone in colour and texture .
The bas-relief frieze is comprised of three stones. The next priority is to re-carve the most damaged of the three. Public Works heritage stonemasons have gathered key information from the monument and will also refer to the 1762 drawings published of the Choragic Monument located in Athens, just as the original stonemason Walter McGill did in Sydney 145 years ago.
These planned works will ensure the monument’s cultural significance is not diminished and that it can be enjoyed by future generations. The works are carried out by the NSW Public Works stonemasons and stone specialist heritage architects from the Government Architect’s Office. The Royal Botanic Gardens, and now the Lysicrates Foundation, are working in funding partnership with the Minister’s Stonework Program.