Fairy Bower, with its exposed waterfront, was right in the path of the storms that smashed into Manly in June.
Marine Parade was wrecked, the entire Fairy Bower toilet block was swept away and water-level cafes were inundated by giant waves.
Three months on repairs are completed or in progress for all the damaged structures, except one - the beautiful 'Sea Nymphs' Oceanides sculpture that has perched on the edge of Fairy Bower pool for the past 20 years.
The storm snapped one of the sculptures in half, turning what had been a joyous dancer into an ugly broken stub.
It can't be repaired, but it can be replaced. Sculptor Helen Leete, who created the artworks, said the sculptures were never designed to be on permanent display.
They were made from ceramic, and reinforced and secured to the rock platform using only mild (low-quality) steel rods.
"The idea was to put them up temporarily - the council needed something done in time for a major event - and then have them properly cast in bronze," Ms Leete said.
But the council's agenda changed and the casting never happened. And while the sculptures have done well to survive for as long as they have, they were showing serious signs of age.
Ms Leete said the steel rods anchoring the sea nymphs to the rock had started to rust. She was so concerned she started work on a replacement in January, six months before the sculpture's eventual demise.
"I started making casts so the sculptures could be created in bronze," Ms Leete said.
"I could do them again in ceramic and they might last another 20 years, but it would be wonderful to go with the original vision and have them in bronze."
Of course that would cost a lot more. Ms Leete has obtained four quotes from bronze foundries for the work. Of the three "credible" quotes, the cheapest came in at a hefty $80,000. That was from Australian Bronze at Manly's North Head.
The original sculptures were not insured, so the money would have to come from the Northern Beaches Council, a public fundraising effort, or a mix of the two.
And this time the nymphs would be anchored deeply into the rock with marine-quality, rust-proof steel. And because they would be bronze, the surface would never deteriorate, which was a problem with the ceramic version. Instead it would gradually shade into a lovely, and very appropriate sea green.
Ms Leete said Northern Beaches council, which is ultimately responsible for the sculpture, has not yet made a decision about replacing the work, or how it should be funded.
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