Visitor services at an iconic mining museum in Tennant Creek will now be operated by Tourism Central Australia.
The volunteer association that had been running the historic Battery Hill Mining Centre handed back the site lease, leading to the change in operation.
The new agreement, effective from Monday, will see Tourism Central Australia delivering services for the next twelve months during which time the Department of Tourism, Sport and Culture in partnership with key NT Government agencies including the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics will deliver a feasibility study on the future use of Battery Hill.
As well as providing visitor information services, Tourism Central Australia will continue to host the Centre’s three static historical and mining displays as well as the Borella Exhibit and Minerals Collection.
Noting that tours of the wider mine site are subject to specific safety regulations, tours will cease to operate for the time being.
Facilitating visitor service provisions remains a focus for the NT Government, and earlier this year the Barkly Regional Visitor Experience Master Plan was released, identifying a strategic vision for visitor experiences in the region.
This was in addition to the $5.5 million Turbocharging Tourism package to revitalise and improve the visitor experience in Tennant Creek which includes $1.5 million towards the Paterson Street streetscape project and other visitor enhancements such as increased signage.
As stated by Minister for Tourism, Sport and Culture, Lauren Moss:
“Tourism is a critical industry providing business opportunities and creating jobs.
“Last year Tourism Central Australia won the visitor centre category of the 2018 Brolga Awards and went on to win bronze at the national level.
“I have no doubt that the Battery Hill Visitor Information Centre will continue its excellent service for the benefit of visitors and the wider community.”
As stated by Member for Barkly, Gerry McCarthy:
“The continuation of visitor services is important for the region and I am pleased to see Tourism Central Australia taking up this role.
“The Barkly region offers a wide range of experiences for travellers and I am sure Tourism Central Australia will help to maximise visitor experience by promoting all the Barkly has to offer such as exploring nature, four-wheel driving and learning about the culture, history and heritage of the area.
“I acknowledge and thank Tourism Central Australia for their support and ongoing management of the Visitor Information Centre, including retaining staff who are the frontline representatives, assisting the thousands of tourists who visit each year.”
As stated by Stephen Schwer, CEO Tourism Central Australia:
“Tourism Central Australia has won numerous NT and national awards for visitor services, and we see the introduction of the Tennant Creek Visitor Information Centre and associated museums to our suite of services as a way of growing visitor yield and dispersal in the NT.
“I thank the Battery Hill Mining Centre Association for their years of dedicated operation of the Tennant Creek Visitor Information Centre prior to this new arrangement.
“The current Battery Hill Mining Centre staff will continue employment as part of the Tourism Central Australian team.”