Does anyone know if memorial benches are now eligible under the new criteria? Thanks for any answer

I'm seeing a few memorial bench nominations and I don't want to skip them all and I don't want to reject something that could now be eligible. Does anyone know for sure if they are eligible? Thanks for any help on this.


Best Answer


  • Ellejayess-PGOEllejayess-PGO Posts: 46 ✭✭✭

    If I'm reading the criteria correctly, memorial benches for lesser-known people seem to be returning to their old eligibility?

    Most meet the criteria "a great place to exercise" as they are "great places to get some air" and "go walking" (they're typically located in parks at scenic viewpoints along walking/cycle trails).

    Most avoid the rejection criteria of temporary or mass-produced (their plaques are typically permanent and unique).

    Only just realised this :)

  • Gendgi-PGOGendgi-PGO Posts: 3,489 Ambassador

    Most meet the criteria "a great place to exercise" as they are "great places to get some air" and "go walking" (they're typically located in parks at scenic viewpoints along walking/cycle trails).

    I would consider a bench the antithesis of a "great place to exercise" as its sole purpose is a place to sit and relax.

    I think memorial benches could be argued but generally would be weak candidates without strong supporting statement.

  • Ellejayess-PGOEllejayess-PGO Posts: 46 ✭✭✭
    edited November 2020

    I often see people using them for exercises like pullups, but for the most part they just provide a destination to walk to or take a break on

    Most are located in parks or beside dual-use paths, so the overall area zone is exercise purpose

  • WheelTrekker-INGWheelTrekker-ING Posts: 3,360 ✭✭✭✭✭

    But that's just every bench, so they remain 1* unless they are significant.

  • Ellejayess-PGOEllejayess-PGO Posts: 46 ✭✭✭
    edited November 2020

    The the old criteria which said memorial benches needed to be decidicated to a historically very significant person has been thrown out the window.

    Under current rejection criteria, we just asses if its temporary, private, or "mass produced".

    I will still reject plain non-memorial benches as mass produced objects. But memorial benches with unique messages don't quite meet the "mass produced" rejection reason.

    Point is - if you're rejecting the overall submission based on the person's signficance, you'd be following the old rules, when we need to switch to the new.

  • SPD85-PGOSPD85-PGO Posts: 170 ✭✭✭✭

    I think it once again depends on the memorial bench. If it's for a notable person, it should be accepted. I would also be favorably inclined towards a bench that is in a remote location, such as at the top of a mountain, especially if there are no other possible candidates around, but I think you'd find a lot of people disagree with that statement.

  • donandlan-PGOdonandlan-PGO Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    I don't see how anyone could see some sort of 'all memorial benches are back!' In these new criteria. The only aspect of the new criteria that I could see any benchs meet are:

    A great place for exploration:

    a destination or a placemark of local interest and importance and which makes our communities unique and shapes its identity.

    Unless there is a compelling aspect to the memorial element that makes it a local landmark or shapes the community, I don't see how "in memory of Mary Smith, a a great mom and daughter" fulfills this expectation.

    A great place to be social with others

    A favorite gathering place for friends or strangers alike, where you can share a drink or meal, be entertained, or watch public life happen. 

    For this, I believe you could argue that a circle of benches at the park would function similarly to a gazebo or pavillion as a gathering place.

  • donandlan-PGOdonandlan-PGO Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    The significant person aspect is still covered by the "a destination or a placemark of local interest and importance " portion of the new criteria. How does aunt Mary's memorial bench meet that criteria?

  • donandlan-PGOdonandlan-PGO Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    The Park is  "a great place to exercise" and are "great places to get some air" and "go walking," not the bench.

  • BaltiCalling-INGBaltiCalling-ING Posts: 362 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I'm all about accepting a memorial bench if the person it is memorializing is worthy. But, many of these are purchased easily, which brings up the candidate rejection criteria: "The object is mass-produced, generic, or not visually unique or interesting."

    Random person X who happened to have their family buy a bench on their behalf would fit this rejection criteria.

  • Ellejayess-PGOEllejayess-PGO Posts: 46 ✭✭✭
    edited November 2020

    You've highlighted only these lines but omitted the ones that I see as most relevent here:

    A great place for exploration

    "A place you love to venture out to; a destination or a placemark of local interest and importance and which makes our communities unique and shapes its identity. Somewhere or something that tells the unique story about a place, its history, its cultural meaning, or teaches us about the community we live in."

    = Here, memorials are placemarks that tell a unique story about the community and have local interest, even lesser significant ones. They tell us something about who the community is

    A great place for exercise

    "A place you'd go to get some fresh air, stretch your legs, or exercise. Places that encourage walking, exercising, and enjoying public spaces. Or something that teaches or encourages us to be our healthiest selves"

    = They're a place to sit to get air, usually with scenic views, and must be walked to. Sitting on them is enjoyment of public space. Often the message plate encourages walking/use of the space too. Older people in particular don't utilise public space/are discouraged from exercise if there is nowhere to take a break

    A great place to be social with others

    "... Or something that draws us together to share an experience in a locally and culturally relevant way"

    The practice of creating memorials even for aunts is local/cultural and we're somewhat drawn together when we use them

  • donandlan-PGOdonandlan-PGO Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    You seem to be arguing with me, but you are repeating two of my points: unique community stories, and gathering place.

    But you can't seriously be claiming that benches, memorial or otherwise, are "a great place for exercise."

    They may be at places for exercise, but a bench is not a great place for exercise. Drinking fountains and street lights are also at great places for exercise, and like benches, they make the great place for exercise more enjoyable, but surely you aren't suggesting everyone of those is also eligible.

  • BBfromTN-PGOBBfromTN-PGO Posts: 18 ✭✭

    Thank you. So it's pretty much the same as it was before then.

  • Gendgi-PGOGendgi-PGO Posts: 3,489 Ambassador

    It is, just less explicit, and I think allows for some leniency in certain situations. A memorial bench overlooking a scenic destination at the end of a long trail could certainly fall under "eligible" on the new criteria update.

  • donandlan-PGOdonandlan-PGO Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    Yes, But in this case, the memorial aspect of the bench is less important the the location of the bench.

  • WheelTrekker-INGWheelTrekker-ING Posts: 3,360 ✭✭✭✭✭

    What's the difference between ordinary benches and memorial benches with regards to "a great place for exploration/a place to sit and have a casual conversation or a place to get some fresh air and do a few light exercises"?

    Is there any special feature that makes memorial benches get better air, help you exercise better, improve your sitting experience?

  • Gazzas89-PGOGazzas89-PGO Posts: 2,595 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Just to clarify, do all benches need to be of a somewhat notable person? Im thinking more that, theres a bench up the sode of a mountain i know of, looks ojt over the valley below, its just for a random person, but the bench itself would be notable for where it is and would meet the exploration criteria, would that make it acceptable? (The only sticking point would be pedestrian access as you need to walk a wee bit along a road, but there is steps next to it)

  • IAmSith22-PGOIAmSith22-PGO Posts: 7 ✭✭
    edited December 2020

    So the person who the memorial bench is dedicated to is significant to the person(s) that paid to have that bench created in the first place. But they may not be ‘culturally or historically’ significant. The bench is no longer generic or mass produced because it is dedicated to the one individual. That doesn’t mean however that it is now visually unique, so I would 1* that part of the review criteria. Also as a reviewer, I may not think they are historically or culturally significant, and thus I would 1* that part of the review criteria also. But I won’t reject the nomination outright because of either of these two issues.

    Like businesses in small communities, they are significant to that community but may be generic or 1* to someone from a large city. These benches are significant to the people that miss their relative, or coworker, or classmate. By having these as portals, it may cause someone who did not know anything about this person in the past to possibly look them up and learn about them.

    Just my $0.02.

  • donandlan-PGOdonandlan-PGO Posts: 201 ✭✭✭

    Do you know that if you 1* the unique aspect and cultural items, the nomination is rejected?

    Also, the criteria is specifically about community interest. If the interest is individual, everything could/should be a POI. My favorite store isn't necessarily a local hotspot, no matter how much I love the place.

  • IAmSith22-PGOIAmSith22-PGO Posts: 7 ✭✭

    Can you point me to where that is documented (the 1* rejection for any individual review criteria)? There is specific verbiage talking about how you can auto reject a submission up front, but I can’t find it anywhere that states if you 1* an individual review criteria then that means you reject the nomination outright.

    If that were the case, then I would need to review every basketball court, tennis court, volleyball court, baseball field, park sign, playground etc. as being both visually unique and culturally significant or they will be auto rejected? I don’t think so. Then my agreement percentage and rating would both be poor at best and that’s definitely not the case...

  • Jtronmoore-PGOJtronmoore-PGO Posts: 1,581 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Generally a 1* on any criteria in the review process is essentially a rejection rating.

    Also I wouldn’t 1* any kind of field as being not visually unique or culturally significant. obviously they are visually unique you can identify it at a glance. And as a sports field it promotes community activities and sports.

  • BaltiCalling-INGBaltiCalling-ING Posts: 362 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Other Wayfinders have received rejection emails that state: 'Object does not appear to be visually unique'. Since that's not one of the 1* rejection reasons, it's been concluded that enough 1* within that category can cause a rejection.

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