Historic move

A Circular Head Heritage Centre volunteer for more than two decades, Georgina Laan is pleased to see the museum reopened to the public. Picture: Ashleigh Force.

Volunteer. Circular Head Heritage Centre has opened its doors once again. 

The local museum was opened to the public yesterday after two years of uncertainty. 

Closed due to building hazards which deemed the premises unsafe to visitors and volunteers, dwindling committee member and volunteer numbers also contributed to the indefinite closure, says longstanding volunteer Georgina Laan. 

“The council were concerned for the safety of the volunteers working within the building [and] made the difficult decision to close the museum to the public,” she says.

“Leading up to and during this same time, the committee had fallen in membership and there were serious concerns that there was not enough interest being shown in keeping the museum open.

“Dwindling numbers of volunteers and committee members had meant that the few remaining volunteers were unable to manage the collection and keep the doors open for any length of time.

“Despite being closed there was still a very enthusiastic core group of volunteers.”

One of which, is volunteer and committee member Elayne Blake who will open the museum Wednesday, Thursday and Friday each week from 11am to 2.30pm.

Thankfully, after calling a public meeting, a new committee has been formed,” says Georgina.  “Works have been carried out on the building to improve safety and the museum can again be opened to the public.”

The Circular Head Heritage Centre building is a piece of history in itself being over 100 years old.  The building houses more than 5000 artefacts and 10,000 photographs, films and slides which were maintained by a small number of volunteers during the centre’s closure.

“Of course as one of the long standing volunteers I have seen many people come and go, which is often the nature of volunteering,” says Georgina, encouraging interested volunteers to come forward.

“Many of those who have volunteered have not been what you would call born and bred in Circular Head like myself but have been enthusiastic about history and the chance to meet many different people as well as assist with their enquiries.”

To keep up to date with upcoming events and exhibitions, ‘Like’ Circular Head Heritage Centre on Facebook. To learn more about volunteering, visit the Circular Head Heritage Centre at 8 King Street, Smithton to speak to a volunteer.

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