FACET Event: Heritage means Business Workshop 24th November 2015

‘Heritage means Business’
Tuesday, 24 November 2015
1.15-6.30pm, Fremantle

Hear first-hand from the creative and passionate people involved in developing and delivering heritage-based tourism experiences.  Find out how you can create a point of difference for your business and deliver successful heritage-based activities.

If you have a story to tell, or a special building or location that you would like to develop, then this workshop is for you.

Register online by 19th November at:  http://www.facet.asn.au/events.aspx  (scroll down to second FACET event for more details)

2015 AGM and Annual Lecture

This year, our AGM will be held at Curtin University in Curtin’s state of the art data visualisation centre, known as the HIVE.  This exciting research facility is designed to help researchers analyse big data, provide unique and high quality digital imaging support, and allow us to imagine our world in new ways.

Dr Mike “Mack” McCarthy, Curator of Maritime Archaeology and adjunct Professor at Notre Dame University, Fremantle, and Texas A&M University will speak on ‘Making the inaccessible accessible: 3D imaging of the “Sydney” and “Kormoran”‘.

History Council members should attend at 5 for the 5:30 AGM. The lecture will be at 6:15 pm.  Entry to the HIVE (back of Building 200A) will be via the BankWest Theatre foyer.  Parking is available in the nearby D3 parking area.

As numbers are limited, please book with office@historycouncilwa.org.au, for both or either event. A gold coin donation (or more) will go towards the hire of the venue. No food or drink is permitted in the HIVE, so we will adjourn for drinks, and possibly a meal, at the Curtin TAV.

Membership renewals and committee positions

This is a friendly reminder that History Council WA memberships are now well and truly due. Members get access to our email roundup and newsletter, and have the right to vote at our upcoming AGM. Member institutions can put forward a representative for the Committee, or you can become a Committee member in your own right.

Nomination forms for the Committee and for the roles of President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasury will be coming your way in the next few weeks.  Please consider standing for the Committee – we have 3 main meetings a year, plus two General Meetings, one of which is the AGM. As Committee members you get to have your voice heard on matters relating to history and heritage at a range of levels.

Culture and Arts in the State Budget

Thanks to the Chamber of Arts and Culture, the President was able to attend a fascinating briefing from Duncan Ord, Director General of the Department of Culture and Arts, on the State Budget. The overall picture for arts and culture, including LotteryWest and other funding, puts the Arts and Culture sector in WA ahead of many other states. Unfortunately, the specifics mean that the various cultural institutions have suffered from either flat line funding, or a loss of income. The New Museum project, includes refurbishment of the heritage buildings and Welshpool storage facility, and DCA have recognised that additional work will need to be spent on other facilities in the Cultural Centre to maintain it as an attractive space and active public area after Yagan Square and Elizabeth Quay are completed.
The Strategic Directions Framework, which is looking to 2030 0r 2031, will go out to the community for consultation, with the intention that it be a document of intent for the arts and cultural sectors. It is important that history and heritage interests are represented in the framework, so please respond to the survey, if you have not done so already. (You might also want to point out the significant anniversary in 2029). Closing dates for the survey and formal responses is by the end of the week.
DCA is looking at a new way of managing and supporting community organisations, and has developed a new Organisations Investment Program.  Expressions of Interest have been sought for new bodies to be supported by the Department, and further rounds of applications will be made available. The funding is set at around $19 mill, with a 1.5% increase over previous years.  The only difficulty with the program at the moment is that it was originally designed to work in conjunction with Australia Council funding.
The Creative Regions program will support additional performance tours in regional WA, as well as providing infrastructure funding.  It is not clear whether touring exhibitions, artist in residence or writers in residence programs will fit with this initiative.  However, there will also be funding for creation of new works and additional content, which may provide an avenue for members’ interests. The role of local and regional government in supporting cultural endeavours was also mentioned. Members should keep an eye on the DCA website for opportunities for funding and to provide feedback on these initiatives.


National Volunteers Week

As this week draws to a close, I’d like to thank and commend my Committee for their time and dedication. They’ve worked on advocacy statements, considered strategic plans and developed events programs (you are all coming to our quiz night, right?). It’s sometimes onerous, and not often rewarded, but I know how much I owe to them.

This week, one of our councillors had to withdraw from the Committee due to other pressures. We now have a number of vacant positions, for which we are looking for incumbents. If you’d like to try being on the History Council committee, please contact office@historycouncilwa.org.au. There are no rewards but the pleasure of working with a dedicated group, passionate about history, and keen to represent all history in Western Australia. It will look good on your CV, provide opportunities to work with historians, allied professions and history lovers from a range of disciplines, and the opportunity to represent the History Council on a broader stage.

History in the pub – with a twist

This year, we’re trying something a little different. Rather than getting the historians and antiquarians to share their passion and expertise, we’ve decided to test you. Yes, that’s right, we’re having a quiz night :-)

The venue is Carnegie’s Bar and Restaurant in Perth, on the 2nd of June. We’ve set up an eventbrite ticket link, so you can book your table, and we can let the nice staff at Carnegie’s know how many to expect.

Questions include general knowledge, world history, music (trying to control the President from only asking early modern and renaissance questions – what is a trouvere? – or something from the age of Motown has been a problem) and of course, history  – of all sorts and all places.

Get your friends together!



Charitable status

I am very please to be able to advise that the History Council of WA is now a registered charity with Australian Charities and Not for Profit Commission (ACNC). While this change means that we will be required to meet the ACNC’s governance requirements, it is also a guarantee to our members that we will remain focused on the job at hand – “To be a strong voice for history” – and that our corporate structure and administration are sound.


In addition, we are now eligible for GST exemptions in some area, which will help with the administration of grant funding. Unfortunately, we were not deemed eligible for Deductible Gift Recipient status, so this will have to be looked at again in future years.

Lise Summers


Premier’s Book Awards will not happen in 2015

On Thursday, the History Council and other stakeholders were advised by the State Library of WA that:

A decision has been made that the Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards will now take place every two years, commencing in 2016. Therefore there will be no 2015 Awards.


No rationale has been provided for the decision, and we are unaware of any consultation or discussion that may have occurred prior to the decision.  The decision does not appear to be in line with the SLWA’s strategic directions of encouraging literacy and creativity. WritingWA has advised that they will be seeking a meeting with SLWA to discuss the situation, and the Chamber of Arts and Culture WA has released a statement, which the History Council endorses.

The History Council has a long and proud tradition of supporting the Premier’s Book Awards, including the review of the History award by then council members, Malcolm Allbrook and Mary Anne Jebb.  We ask that members write to the Council and to SLWA expressing their concern and support for the awards.

A change.org petition is now being circulated.