Perth Observatory Volunteer Group receives grant to assess heritage collection


Paul Jones flicks through some of the significant collection at the Perth Observatory.
Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au   d462570
Paul Jones flicks through some of the significant collection at the Perth Observatory. Picture: David Baylis www.communitypix.com.au d462570

THE Perth Observatory Volunteer Group has been awarded a $4500 Federal Community Heritage Grant to fund an assessment of the observatory’s heritage collection.

The group manages the observatory at Bickley as an outreach and educational facility.

It is run through a community partnership agreement with the State Government and Department of Parks and Wildlife.

Bickley volunteer Paul Jones recently attended a three-day intensive preservation and collection management workshop at the National Library in Canberra.

He also visited the National Archives of Australia, the National Museum of Australia and the National Film and Sound Archive in Canberra.

Mr Jones said the grant was important in supporting the efforts of volunteers to preserve the Observatory’s collection of artefacts, documents, photos and books that had been accumulated over 120 years of continuous operation.

“We are thrilled with the whole process because the grant money will assist identification of the nationally significant parts of the collection and the workshop has provided information to help us protect the collection and make it accessible while it remains in the local context,” Mr Jones said.

The grant will be used to hire a consultant with expertise in significance assessment.

Grants totalling $415,000 have been distributed to 77 community groups and organisations from around Australia to assist in the identification and preservation of community-owned but nationally significant heritage collections this year.

National Library director-general Anne-Marie Schwirtlich said the program showed the commitment by the National Library and the Federal Government in encouraging communities to care for the nation’s heritage.

The grants scheme is managed by the National Library. It is funded by the Australian Government through the Department of Communications and the Arts, the National Archives of Australia, the National Film and Sound Archive, the National Museum of Australia and the National Library.