Dear NSW Government Planners,
We registered our interest in your 2019 plans and three of our DACC committee attended a tour and explanations by a team of the UrbanGrowth NSW Development Corporation in January 2019. The team did an excellent job and we were impressed and hopeful that our suggestion to form a Migration Museum there would bear fruit. We registered our interest but never heard anything further.
However, to our surprise we later learnt that the Development Corporation was abolished in July 2019. Apparently, no successor organisation was formed. I later attended a large gathering of people celebrating the restoration of the Women’s Factory which they hoped would be awarded World Heritage Status in early 2020. However, it seemed that there were no further plans for all the other buildings.
Could you explain to us what, if any, further plans exist that might result in a Migration Museum and a possible place for the Dutch Australia Cultural Centre? We understand now that the responsibility for the heritage area has shifted in 2021 to the NSW Planning, Industry and Environment Department but the details provided on the website of that Department are still vague and general. While the history of the First People of Australia is of course very important (and specifically mentioned) , there are close to 20 buildings there. We would suggest that the heritage of the large number of migrants of non-Anglo origin is of major importance to this multicultural society. Would this not be an obvious purpose for at least part of the buildings and the area? Several other cities have a Migration Museum e.g. Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth and Broken Hill. Amazingly, Sydney does not have such a Museum. We suggest to you that this would be a very worthwhile use for the suitable buildings and area. The timing on your website suggests that in “mid 2021” the NSW government is to consider “Heritage Core Business”.
From you website:
- Early 2021 – Parramatta Girls Home Memorial & Heritage Garden completed
- Early to mid-2021 – ongoing delivery of strategic planning, essential conservation works and site improvement initiatives
- Mid 2021 – NSW Government considers Heritage Core Business Case
- Mid 2021 – subject to NSW Government investment decision, staged delivery of Heritage Core conservation and activation initiatives
- Late 2021 – Western Sydney Startup Hub completed
- Conserve and activate a precinct of national heritage significance
- Respect the past and plan for an innovative, activated future
- Become part of an emerging global cultural and innovation destination
The Parramatta North Program team has been actively delivering a range of projects and strategic planning initiatives across the Heritage Core to further progress the Place Vision developed with the community in 2018.
With conservation, activation and community at its heart, the Heritage Core is a place of living history and memory for many people, particularly those with connections to the numerous institutions that operated on site. This forms an intrinsic part of its place identity.
The Program team respects the significant history and place identity of the Heritage Core and is committed to progressing conservation and activation in line with the Place Vision.
Place vision and principles
A place where past lessons fuel future opportunities, the Heritage Core is a place of living history and memory for many people, particularly for those with connections to the numerous institutions that operated on the site. This rich and complex history forms an intrinsic part of its place identity.
All work in the Heritage Core is guided by the vision and principles developed with the community in 2018. These include:
- First Peoples first
- Active memory
- Everybody’s welcome.
Obvious, we remain interested! The DACC has gone digital recently. We invite you to have a look our new Digital website.
KlaasWoldring, Ph. D.
Dutch Australian Cultural Centre, Ltd.