The Rhodes Memorial

Rhodes memorial is found on the Eastern slopes of Devils Peak overlooking the Southern suburbs of Cape Town. It was built to commemorate the mining magnate and politician Cecil John Rhodes.

While history was does always reflect well on Mr Rhodes, the man who was responsible for annexing much of Southern Africa to the British Empire, Capetonians may be forgiven for being grateful to him as he layed the foundation for the environmental protection of much of the Eastern slopes of Table Mountain.

Using his great fortune he bought The Groot Schuur Estate in 1891. The restored building here later became the official residence of the Prime ministers of South Africa. In 1895 he went on to buy the farm of Kirstenbosch and the Cecelia Estate this meaning that he personally owned most of the Eastern slopes of Table Mountain.

After his death in 1902, these 3 properties were left in trust for the people of Cape Town.  Kirstenbosch Gardens was established in 1913, whilst much of the Cecelia area was used for commercial forestry until recently. It has now passed into the hands on Table Mountain National Park. The Groote Schuur Estate for many years was used as a zoo and was home to many exotic beasts, however the zoo has now closed and much of the Estate has also passed into the hands of The National Park.

The view of the Southern Suburbs from Rhodes Memorial

 The spot for the memorial was chosen as it was close to a bench where Rhodes frequently sat and quietly contemplated life.  It was eracted in 1912.