Fern Ball Repairs

19 July 2011

The Ferns sculpture in Civic Square was taken down last week after wear and tear on its fixings were detected in the latest annual engineering inspection.

The fern ball sculpture is down for repairs

The fern ball sculpture is down for repairs

Regular maintenance of the 200 kg sculpture was initially planned following the Rugby World Cup 2011 - primarily to replace support wires - but the latest inspection meant we couldn't wait that long.

Engineers say there is significant fatigue on one of the fixings on the sphere and the aluminium has started to tear. On their advice, we've removed the sculpture from the Square so it can undergo a thorough assessment before being repaired.

Ferns, by Christchurch artist Neil Dawson, was installed in Civic Square in 1998 and has since become a popular subject for photographers and tourists.

It's not certain when repairs to the sculpture will be complete - we're aiming for it to be back up in time for Rugby World Cup 2011.