Bendigo set for golden moment

BENDIGO will be the site of a state government announcement to formally recognise gold as the mineral emblem of Victoria.

Premier Ted Baillieu stated his intention to introduce gold as the state’s mineral symbol during parliament this week.

Mr Baillieu told the parliament that special motions would be moved at the sitting of the Legislative Council at Bendigo Town Hall on September 6.

The Legislative Assemby will sit in Ballarat the same day.

“Gold has played a central role in the history of the development of our great state,” Mr Baillieu said.

“I can think of few places more appropriate than the cities of Ballarat and Bendigo to formalise this fact.

“Both of these important regional cities have a golden thread running through their history and heritage.

“Indeed, the world’s largest alluvial gold nugget was found

 in 1869 near Moliagul, then a thriving gold town west of 

Bendigo and north of Ballarat.

“Appropriately, that nugget – which after more than 140 years is still the largest discovered – was named Welcome Stranger.

“This reminds us that from our earliest times Victorians have been welcoming. 

“Whether the original indigenous people or those who came later, we have always welcomed newcomers.”

Mr Baillieu said he was sure the motion would receive bipartisan support.

“Once the parliament has approved the adoption of our new state mineral emblem, a recommendation will be made to the Governor to formally declare it,” Mr Baillieu said.

Victoria was the first state to adopt a floral emblem – the pink heath – in 1958. 

In 1971 a land faunal emblem, leadbeater’s possum, and a bird emblem, the helmeted honeyeater, were adopted.

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