Army

Ex Kiwi Refresh: 100 tons of chalk give Bulford monument a makeover

The 130m-tall 'Bulford Kiwi' was carved into Beacon Hill on Salisbury Plain in 1919 by soldiers from New Zealand.

One hundred tons of chalk have been delivered to a hillside near Bulford to restore the affectionately termed 'Bulford Kiwi' to its past glory.

Carved into the hillside by Kiwi soldiers waiting to return home at the end of the First World War, the monument is recognised as a nationally important archaeological site and is taken care of by the Ministry of Defence as part of its estate.

Exercise Kiwi Refresh is part of an ongoing restoration project to preserve the symbol – the last restoration visit taking place in 2018 – and the role of New Zealand's soldiers in Belgium's Battle of Messines in 1917, which it commemorates.

There will be a wreath-laying ceremony on 22 June, after 249 Gurkha Signal Squadron organised a one-day event to remove weeds and re-chalk the area.

The chalk payload was meant to arrive via Chinook helicopter, but a last-minute cancellation meant a tractor had to be used for the job.