Central Deborah and trams receive heritage grant

Bendigo Tramways will receive an $8,800 boost thanks to a federal Community Heritage Grant (CHG).

The grant was awarded to the Bendigo Trust in October, to fund a significance assessment for collections at the two iconic attractions.

The trust was one of 78 community groups and organisations across Australia to receive part of a $428,675 allocation to identify and preserve nationally significant heritage collections.

Bendigo Trust chief executive Tom Seddon said the grant would support staff’s efforts to preserve the trust’s extensive collection.

“The Trust has accumulated thousands of items in its 42-year history,” he said.

“Not just the trams and other big things that most people know about, but photographs, letters, family and business papers, drawings, and much more, including lots of objects.”

Mr Seddon recently attended a three-day intensive preservation and collection workshop at the National Library in Canberra, which highlighted the need to assess heritage collections.

“A professionally conducted significance assessment of the tram and mine collections will help us focus on what is important to keep, and also to determine what might be better given to another institution,” he said.

“From there we will be able to produce a new collection policy and also seek preservation-studies funding for items that are assessed as being particularly valuable.”

One item likely to be assessed as particularly important is the Victorian Miner’s Right #1 from 1856. The certificate was recovered last year with the assistance of Victorian Police, having been stolen in 1975.

National Library of Australia director-general Anne-Marie Schwirtlich said the CHG program promoted care for the nation’s heritage.

CHG is managed by the National Library.

It is funded by the Australian government, National Archives of Australia, National Film and Sound Archive, National Museum of Australia and National Library.

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