The ACT Government has pledged $1 million in the 2018 ACT Budget for additional funding to local heritage sites and the Canberra Museum and Gallery (CMAG).
The investment will aim to improve the visitor experience, improving accessibility and investing in conservation and collections storage to ensure growing numbers of visitors and community groups can continue to share in Canberra’s unique heritage and social history.
Minister for Arts and Community Events Gordon Ramsay said Canberra’s historic places and cultural institutions are seeing growing visitor numbers every year and this investment will protect their heritage values while expanding the range of programs they can offer.
“We will invest in upgrades to the galleries and facilities at CMAG so that this institution can expand its capacity to collect, conserve and exhibit more local artists,” Mr Ramsay said.
“These institutions are dedicated to the social history and visual arts of the Canberra region.
“They connect people with our region’s rich and diverse stories, sense of place and contemporary identity.”
The $1 million new investment in conservation, upgrade and expansion works will add to the $6.2 million the ACT Government already delivers each year. Mr Ramsay said the additional investment will support the institution and ensure they can share Canberra’s stories with even more visitors.
The announcement was made on International Museum Day which focuses world attention on the role of museums in their local communities, their cultural landscape and their natural environment.
The upcoming 2018 Budget will also invest in conservation works at heritage sites across the territory, including Lanyon Homestead at Tharwa, Calthorpes’ House at Red Hill and Mugga Mugga at Symonston.
Mr Ramsay said these places are among Canberra’s most significant sites relating to Canberra’s early European heritage.
“These properties together attract around 55,000 visitors a year as well as delivering education programs to about 3,700 local students a year,” he said.
“CMAG is also an increasingly popular destination and holds the largest collection of artworks by artists from the Canberra region as well as several nationally significant works such as the iconic Sidney Nolan Collection.”