Ballarat Town Hall wins Community History Award

The City of Ballarat has taken out the multimedia category at the Victorian Community History Awards, for its Town Hall audio tour ‘If These Walls Could Talk’ launched in late-2018.

The award recognises the best presentation of history which uses non-print media and has broad community reach.

The self-guided tour takes visitors to 10 locations of interest around the 150 year-old Ballarat Town Hall building, including the Council Chamber and Main Hall, with short narrations accessed through a smart phone on site or remotely via the HUL Ballarat website

The stories conveyed through the comprehensive tour include major events in Ballarat’s sometimes turbulent past, as well as introducing visitors to the building and the roles it has fulfilled throughout the city’s history.

The narrations are voiced by people with real connections to the building, including Cr Samantha McIntosh, one of the City’s hall keepers, the son of a former hall keeper and the granddaughter of Ballarat’s first female Mayor, Jessie Scott.

The City of Ballarat has adopted UNESCO’s Historic Urban Landscape approach, which looks deeper than the built environment to identify stories and people that bring places to life. The audio tour was designed with this in mind.

Ballarat Mayor, Cr Samantha McIntosh said it was well deserved recognition for a thoughtful and considered approach to telling Ballarat’s story in an authentic setting.

She also congratulated consulting historians from ‘Way Back When’, audio engineer Russell Goldsmith and graphic designer Dimity Mapstone for their work on the award-winning project.

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