MD2330 London Remembrance Gallery

Type of decision: 
Mayoral decision
Code: 
MD2330
Date signed: 
26 July 2018
Decision by: 
Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London

Executive summary

2018 marks the end of the centenary commemorations of the First World War. To pay tribute to those that lost their lives and highlight this important time in history, as well as other conflicts, it is proposed to rename City Hall’s Viewing Gallery on the first floor the ‘London Remembrance Gallery’. It is proposed that a semi-permanent exhibition is installed on the second-floor of City Hall in the exhibition area. This exhibition will mark the centenary of the end of the First World War, but will also be flexible enough that the content can change as required, potentially highlighting other commemorations. The ‘London Remembrance Gallery’ will be opened on 9 November 2018, the day of the annual Remembrance Service.

Decision

That the Mayor approves:

1. renaming of City Hall’s Viewing Gallery on the first floor the ‘London Remembrance Gallery’;

2. expenditure of up to £100,000 from the GLA’s Corporate contingency budget on external services for the design and installation of the semi-permanent exhibition; and

3. expenditure of up to £4,000 per annum from Facilities Management’s existing revenue budget for the annual maintenance costs.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

As 2018 marks the centenary of the Armistice and end of the First World War, the GLA’s ambition is to use the significance of 2018 to commission a permanent exhibition, in the exhibition area on the second floor of City Hall. The exhibition will commemorate this significant milestone in world history by remembering Londoners that have been impacted by war over the last one hundred years including in the First World War and Second World War. It will remember the stories of the young, the old and fallen service men and women.

The exhibition will be semi-permanent and will be designed to be easily removed and re-installed, to allow for the exhibition to potentially be toured across London.

The GLA will also rename the Viewing Gallery area at City Hall. It will be renamed the London Remembrance Gallery.

The London Remembrance Gallery will be officially opened on the 9 November 2018, on the day of the City Hall Service of Remembrance which is a joint Mayor of London and London Assembly event, delivered in partnership with the Royal British Legion and a wide range of military organisations.

Several exhibition companies were invited to pitch proposals in May 2018 for the exhibition, of which GuM Studio, with contributions from Thomas Manss & Co and The Moule Partnership, has been selected to design and produce this exhibition.

The exhibition is planned to be inclusive and aimed at Londoners, achieved through content that will include representation from across London’s 32 boroughs and the City of London. The proposal for the content of the exhibition will include stories from different communities and highlight how war has impacted Londoners, over the last 100 years, from diverse backgrounds of ethnicity, faith, age and gender. The exhibition is about sharing the stories of different communities.

This proposal has been shared with the Chair of the Royal British Legion City Hall Branch who is in agreement in principle with it.

GLA Facilities Management has been consulted and have raised some considerations to be factored into final design and implementation plans. To take into account operational feedback the scope of this project may have some changes which would likely incur additional expenditure. As such the budget requested includes contingency allocation to take this into account.

Approval is therefore being sought for expenditure of up to £100,000 for the design and installation of a permanent exhibition.

Objectives and expected outcomes

Objectives:

a. To remember the stories of how Londoners’ lives have been impacted by war over the last hundred years, using the context of the centenary of the end of the First World War.

b. To ensure the ‘London Remembrance Gallery’ is a space of remembrance without materially impacting on how this space is used both by the public visiting City Hall and commercially.

c. To appoint a suitably experienced exhibition company to design and install a semi-permanent exhibition that is sustainable and represents all 32 London boroughs and the City of London.

Outcomes:

a. A lasting tribute to Londoners who have fought in wars, been impacted by war and lost the lives in combat will be installed in City Hall, for future generations to see.

b. Each London borough will be represented in the exhibition with a story of how their own residents have been impacted by war or conflict. Bringing together all London boroughs in an act of remembrance.

Equality comments

Under Section 149 of the Equality Act 2010, as a public authority, the GLA must have ‘due regard’ of the need to:

• eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation; and
• advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations between people who have a protected characteristic and those who do not.

In agreeing the final specification with the contracted exhibition company, consideration will be given to inclusion / availability of accessible formats, e.g. braille / audio description to help ensure the London Remembrance Gallery is open and accessible to all.

The potential impact on people with access needs is that the proposed exhibition area is not located near a lift. This has been considered in that the area is accessible via a short distance, including a ramp, from the second-floor lifts. It is also accessible via a ramp from the ground floor of City Hall.

Other considerations
  1. In delivering this project, there has been consultation with Chair of the Royal British Legion City Hall branch to ensure that the proposal is an appropriate option.

 

  1. There has also been consultation with GLA’s Facilities Management Team, to ensure that it will take full account of directives regarding what is permissible within the building; including consideration of the lease of City Hall, and to ensure the proposed exhibition is fully compatible with the wider operation of City Hall. In this regard the proposed exhibition is non-fixed and can be removed as required.

 

  1. Due consideration is also given to the potential commercial leasing of the space by the GLA and potential income risk. Given the discreet, non-intrusive nature of the design of the exhibition, it is considered to have limited risk to any commercial activity that might be proposed to take place in the space. 

 

  1. The exhibition will seek to align with any specific commitments made by the Mayor to communities regarding remembrance commemoration.

 

  1. Following consultation with GLA’s Facilities Management Team, it has been highlighted that the proposed area for the London Remembrance Gallery can be seen from inside the Chamber and must be closed during meetings, so that Chamber proceedings are not disturbed. This is often during public opening hours and will reduce accessibility. Due to the proposed semi-permanent exhibition located on the second floor, it is not deemed a risk that the public may not always have access to ’The London Remembrance Gallery’, and this will be made explicit on the website.

 

  1. The Viewing Gallery area is not located adjacent to lifts, GLA’s Facilities Management Team advised this could reduce accessibility to the London Remembrance Gallery’. The is not deemed a risk as the Viewing Gallery has ramp access leading to it from the second-floor lifts and ground level.

 

  1. It is expected that the exhibition will incur £4,000 of annual maintenance costs. These costs are anticipated as follows:

 

Item

Cost

Cleaning (4 times per year)

£1,000

Annual porterage fees

£2,000

Contingency maintenance fund

£1,000

Total

£4,000

 

 

  1. Further risks indicated by GLA’s Facilities Management Team include:

 

      1. there should be signposting for the exhibition across the public areas of the building; and

 

      1. the exhibition will need to be protected against vandalism, as the area is not staffed at all times.

 

These risks will be given further consideration.

Financial comments

The estimated cost of £100,000 for the design and installation of the permanent exhibition is proposal will be funded from the Authority’s Corporate Contingency budget for 2018-19.

There will be ongoing annual maintenance costs of up to £4,000 per annum and these costs will be contained within Facilities Management’s existing revenue budget.is anticipated annual maintenance cost of £4,000 for this proposal.

Planned delivery approach and next steps

Following approval of this decision form, the GLA will enter into a contract with the appointed exhibition design company. A timeline for actions will be agreed, with the contract being managed and monitored, and all necessary consultation undertaken by GLA Events Team.

The project will be completed in time for the for the annual City Hall Service of Remembrance, which is to take place on Friday 9 November, the planning for which will also be undertaken by the GLA Events team.

Activity table

Activity

Timeline

Procurement of contract

July 2018

Announcement

November 2018

Delivery Start Date

August 2018

Delivery End Date

November 2018

Project Closure

November 2018


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