Heritage grants announced

Historical firefighting vehicles The bush capital of today is a very different city to that of my youth.

I sense that Canberra is now confident, bold and ready. We are poised to take on opportunities and challenges that reach beyond 2020.

As we embrace the wonderful opportunities before us, we should never lose sight of the past. Our history informs the present and guides us to an exciting future.

Beneath the fabric of our community lies a rich tapestry that has been woven over time, informed by experiences and past lives lived.

It has been said that a cohesive, compassionate community is one that is grounded in its knowledge of the past and an appreciation of history.

Today we celebrate a shared heritage, an ancient Indigenous landscape upon which new arrivals have traversed. It is a rich cultural landscape that shapes the essence of life here in the bush capital.

While the nation's capital is relatively young, we walk in the footsteps of the traditional custodians, the settlers and the pioneers. They all laid the foundations of the bush capital.

The ACT Heritage Council works hard to recognise, preserve and celebrate these intrinsic values.

To help illuminate our collective past, the latest round of heritage grants has been announced. It is a wonderful occasion to pause and shine the spotlight on the historical threads which bind us as a community.

Twenty-one local projects have received funding this year, reflecting a broad range of heritage in the region. From space to sport, fashion to architecture, and nature to Indigenous culture, all represent the diversity that as community we hold dear.

The list of successful projects includes an exciting project to conserve Canberra Fire Museum historic uniforms, and a wonderful book that will highlight the pioneering days of cricket in the bush capital.

With a funding allocation of $355,000, the ACT Heritage Grants Program make a real difference, by supporting grass roots community groups who are empowered to conserve and share the past with the present.

Ultimately, this sort community action translates to economic benefits. It creates a sense of excitement, interest, wonderment around the past which draws in tourists and locals alike to appreciate what our heritage means to us as a community. The growth of the Design Canberra Festival, Canberra Modern and the runaway success that is the ACT and Region Heritage Festival are proof-positive of the value that we place in our shared heritage.

We have a unique past that is to be justifiably celebrated.

View the complete list of local projects that have received heritage grants this year.

Brett McNamara is with ACT Parks & Conservation Service.

Brett Mac

Brett McNamara - Regional Manager with ACT Parks & Conservation Service

Brett loves our national parks almost as much as the Gang-gang on his uniform. He is prone to using the word 'majestic' when referring to the bush capital. He loves talking. A lot. His favourite animal is the playful platypus.

Article also appeared in The Chronicle