Six Western Australian groups will receive grants to help preserve the state’s heritage following the announcement of the 2009 Community Heritage Grants.
The successful and popular program is providing grants worth $31 600 to 6 community groups and organisations around the state in 2009. The groups include museums, historical societies, Indigenous and religious organisations. Each will receive funds to assist in the preservation of community owned but nationally significant heritage collections.
Highlights include $4 400 to the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council Aboriginal Corporation for a significance assessment of the collections and $4 000 to St George’s Cathedral Chapter for a significance assessment of the cathedral collection. Museums Australian Inc (WA) also received $11 700 to provide training workshops to museum staff in regional areas including Kalgoorlie, Albany and Broome.
Recipients attend a three-day intensive preservation and collection management workshop held at the National Library, the National Archives of Australia, the National Museum of Australia and the National Film and Sound Archive in Canberra.
National Library Director-General Jan Fullerton said the Community Heritage Grants program showed the commitment by the National Library, along with its partner institutions and the Federal Government, in encouraging communities to care for the nation’s heritage, be it in small country towns or capital cities.
“It is all about working together to help spread the message that if we don’t preserve our history now, it could be lost forever,” she said.
“Through sharing this knowledge, the information can be taken back to the communities where it is most needed to ensure that local heritage collections are still there for future generations.”
The grant money is used for significance assessments, preservation needs assessments, conservation treatments, preservation training, digitisation, and purchasing quality storage materials or environmental monitoring equipment.
The Community Heritage Grants Program is managed by the National Library. It is funded by the Australian Government through the Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts; the National Archives of Australia; the National Film and Sound Archive; the National Museum of Australia and the National Library.
The St Brigid's Convent of Mercy Perth (Sisters of Mercy West Perth) received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the archive and heritage collection. The collection includes documents, photographs, artefacts and objects related to the history and activities of the Sisters of Mercy West Perth.
St George's Cathedral Chapter received $4 000 for a significance assessment of the cathedral collection. Linked with the first presence of a Christian church in Western Australia, the archive collection includes items of interest including a piece of jarrah wood cut from the tree under which the first Anglican Church service was held on the Swan River colony in 1829 and Villers-Brettonneux Cross (WWI).
Perth Diocesan Trustees, Anglican Church of Australia received $3 500 for a map/plan cabinet to house the Architectural Plan collection. The collection contains parish and building plans, artists’ impressions in watercolour and gouache of proposed and actual buildings and photographs of buildings under construction. Much of this material dates from the 19th century.
Manjimup Historical Society Inc received $4 400 for a preservation needs assessment of the collection. Housed in historic buildings known as ‘The Hamlet’ the collection contains unique items relating to the development of the commercial growing of tobacco in the area from the early 1920s, including documents, photographs and tools and implements.
Museums Australian Inc (WA) received $11 700 for Training Workshops – Four Collection Storage & Preventative Conservation Workshops and one Disaster Plan and Recovery Workshop. The workshops will provide training to museum staff in regional areas including Kalgoorlie, Albany and Broome, and will benefit collecting organisations and promote the preservation of regional collections in Western Australia.
South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council Aboriginal Corporation received $4 400 for a significance assessment of the collections. Material held in the collections includes oral histories, photographs, genealogical information, maps and books all related to the Noongar people.