Celebrating a $200,000 funding windfall, Museum of Education Trustees Bill Oates, left, Graham Wilson OAM, Wayne Hoppe, Chairman Alan Hardaker, Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall and Secretary Sue Tanner.
Monday, 2 November 2020
The classrooms at the Armidale Museum of Education will once again be filled with students eager to learn, with Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall today announcing a $200,000 State Government grant to refurbish the facility to allow it to cater for larger visitor numbers.
The funding was made available through the State Government’s COVID-19 NSW Crown Lands stimulus program.
Mr Marshall said the grant would help the new and enthusiastic Trustees improve the ageing buildings to better support the museum’s role as an education and tourism asset for the region.
“For 66 years the Armidale Museum of Education has provided the community with a fascinating insight into a bygone era of education at the turn of the century,” Mr Marshall said.
“This funding is great news as it will allow the museum to continue that legacy by embarking on a staged refurbishment to restore its buildings to their former glory.
“Built around the Dumaresq School from the 1880s, an 1883 school from Pallamallawa, and a 1948 portable classroom from Armidale High, the museum has sustained considerable water damage over the years.
“Each of the buildings will be repainted in heritage colours to better protect them from the weather and old boards will be replaced.
“The museum currently has no bathroom facilities, so to ensure it is able to meet modern standards a new amenities block, with disability access, will be constructed.
“Work will also be undertaken to update the electricity supply, plumbing and drainage onsite.
“This museum is home to a vast collection of authentic period furniture, books, teaching aids and photographs and this restoration will go a long way to ensuring these records of our region a preserved for future generations to enjoy.”
President of the Museum’s new Board of Land Managers Alan Hardaker said it is his hope the museum would become part of the greater Kentucky Street cultural precinct.
“The Museum of Education has sadly been neglected for a number of years and so fallen into a state where it needs significant repair work,” Mr Hardaker said.
“This grant has provided our committee with an opportunity to tackle the majority of works needed and identified by architect Tony Deakin.
“Working in the with Aboriginal Keeping Place, NERAM and the Family History Group and the Heritage Centre we believe restoring the Museum of Education will just increase the tourism appeal of the Kentucky Street cultural precinct.
“These upgrades will unlock a world of opportunity for the museum to be able to cater for large touring groups and school excursions.
“Our committee is proud to be part of the State Government’s COVID-19 stimulus effort, excited that all this work will be contracted to local tradespeople and the funds will be spent in local businesses.
“With an archive of more than 6,000 early school texts we believe the Museum of Education is an important community asset which deserves to be preserved. We thank Adam and the State Government for their support in its restoration.”