21 March 2023, Cr Chris Meddows-Taylor – Advertiser


Council is busy with its annual task of developing a budget. One of the issues Council faces is that many of our treasured gold rush heritage buildings need costly maintenance and repair.

World Heritage Listing (WHL) of the Victorian Goldfields will increasingly assist us with that task. Quite often the benefits of WHL are seen in terms of added tourism benefit as sites become global destinations. Certainly, with an estimated 2.2 million new visitors to the region over 10 years and $440 million visitor spend over this period, with 1750 new tourism jobs and 4140 added accommodation rooms, the impact of added tourism alone is impressive.

What this omits is the benefits of WHL to heritage conservation and preservation. There is a driving focus on the need to invest in these critical assets and showcase them in creative engaging ways for future visitors. Governments invest in these assets, their interpretation and story-telling as well as the other community infrastructure needed to support added visitation. Importantly though, private sector investors see the economic benefits in investment and lending institutions are more ready to partner with them to achieve this. Critically, WHL will create added investment opportunity for the 2026 Commonwealth Games.

The exciting feature of our WHL journey is that through a focus on our very special listed sites and the extensive heritage travel journeys which will be developed, so many locations and communities big and small and their heritage assets will share and benefit and achieve future prosperity and sustainability.

Further information www.goldfieldsworldheritage.com.au

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