Two years ago Museums and Galleries of NSW received funds from the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and the NSW Heritage Council to help smaller organisations with their building needs.
We divided the money into two streams; one dedicated for building improvement work and the other to commission detailed building assessments. The program is designed as a two-tier one so that once an assessment has been completed it is then possible to apply for money to complete the nominated work.
This is a critical program for many small volunteer museums whose premises need to be safe on several counts. They need to be appropriate for visitors; meet public liability responsibilities, and Workplace Safety guidelines; and importantly provide adequate collection care environments. Many small, local organisations are housed in properties offered to them through their local councils or by benefactors, and often occupy heritage buildings which can be expensive to repair, difficult to modify and challenging to retro-fit. The Building Improvement grants represent front line funding opportunities and practical solutions for small and regional organisations and we acknowledge the insight of the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and the NSW Heritage Council in making monies available for this purpose.
This year’s funding round closed in July, applications assessed in September, and today we are pleased to announce the recipients.
BUILDING IMPROVEMENT WORK
- Port Macquarie Historical Society Museum will engage a contractor to carry out replace and improve guttering and roof drainage. Damaged gutters and a leaking roof have resulted in serious damp, salt and mould problems.
- Walcha Pioneer Cottage and Museum will engage a contractor to repair the wooden shingle roof on their museum building where leaks have caused internal damage and placed artefacts at risk.
- Macleay Valley Community Art Gallery will replace the existing halogen lighting (3Kw/hr) with energy efficient LED lighting (0.9 Kw/hr) to provide better illumination for displayed art works, reducing energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
- Bega Pioneers Museum
- Golden Memories Museum, Millthorpe
- Tarella Cottage Museum, Blue Mountains
- Moruya Museum
Australian Museum Consulting has been engaged to carry out the building assessments for the above four museums. M&G NSW has contracted Australian Museum Consulting – an initiative of the Australian Museum – they demonstrate clear expertise and for every assessment look at both collection, environmental and building fabric needs, providing a dedicated materials conservator and a senior heritage architect to undertake the assessments.
Each assessment returns a series of detailed recommendations providing a blue-print for building care, prioritised maintenance work, and reliable, qualified advice for the future.
Congratulations to all recipients. We look forward to sheltering under new roofs!
The program is called the NSW Heritage Grants Community, Youth and Seniors Heritage Program and it is generously funded and supported by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage and the NSW Heritage Council.