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Minister for the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts 2001-2004

The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP



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Media Release
The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

20 April 2004

New funds for Queensland's heritage places

Places which reflect strands of Queensland's rich history - gold mining, Saturday matinees, Sunday services and Kanaka labour - will endure as the result of Australian Government heritage funding announced today.

The Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Dr David Kemp, said the Kanaka-related Selwyn House in Mackay, two 100-year-old chimney stacks at Mount Morgan, Surat's 1920s theatre, and St Paul's Presbyterian Church in Brisbane were among 16 Queensland places to receive funding through the Cultural Heritage Projects Program (CHPP).

“This program is designed to give a financial ‘helping hand' to individuals, community groups and local governments who are working hard to conserve their important heritage places,” Dr Kemp said.

“Queensland's heritage is enormously diverse. The grants I am announcing today reflect its multi-stranded history. From educating Kanaka labour in the cane fields to the joys of Saturday matinees – these places remind us of Queensland's history and its stories and why they are important to keep.

“For this reason I am delighted that the Australian Government will give $103,109 to help conserve Selwyn House which was used to educate indentured South Sea Islander labour in the Mackay area in the late 1800s. It was built originally as a simple hall with verandahs in 1896 but over the years has been added to, reflecting the growth of the Mackay sugar industry.

“In central Queensland, Mount Morgan's two towering chimney stacks reflect an equally fascinating part of Queensland's history – its gold mining heritage. Mount Morgan was one of the oldest and richest gold mines in Australia and paved the way for European settlement of the area.

“The Assay Stack and the Main Stack dominate the Mount Morgan landscape and are powerful reminders of the town's contribution to Australian mining. Over the years lightening strikes have damaged these stacks and $24,016 provided through the CHPP program will help to repair the damage and avoid future strikes by installing down-conductors and earthing systems.”

Dr Kemp said Surat's Astor Theatre and St Paul's Presbyterian Church at Spring Hill were different places again but shared a central role in the life of their communities.

“The Astor was built in 1925 and still has its original carbon rod projectors which are in working condition,” Dr Kemp said. “The CHPP program is giving $88,200 to help stabilise walls and repair part of the building so that future generations of locals and visitors can enjoy its amenities.

“St Paul's octagonal spire is a prominent landmark in Brisbane and was designed by colonial architect Francis Drummond Greville Stanley in the late 1800s. His skill as an architect is acknowledged by the Royal Australian Institute of Architects (Qld chapter) in the naming of its highest honour – the FDG Stanley Award. $100,000 in funding is being given for restoration work on the spire.

“The grants announced today will invigorate many of Australia's valued heritage places by providing resources to help protect them for future generations. They will also bring benefits to the wider local, regional and state communities.”

A list of CHPP projects is attached.

Cultural Heritage Funding Information

The CHPP is open to not-for-profit and community groups, local government bodies and private owners of heritage properties. Projects eligible for funding relate to the conservation of nationally significant places listed in the Register of the National Estate and the Register's Interim List, or on a state heritage register.

Other projects in Queensland that will receive this year's CHPP grants.

Commonwealth of Australia