@ Eli Melky (Posted October 4, 2019 at 11:35 am): …

Comment on Council backflip on Anzac Oval heritage by Alex Nelson.

@ Eli Melky (Posted October 4, 2019 at 11:35 am): I acknowledge Councillor Melky’s long-standing support for the preservation of Anzac Oval in its existing state as a major community asset which predates the beginning of my effort towards nominating the oval for heritage listing.
I also thank Councillor Auricht for his principled stand on this matter.
As for Councillor Satour’s querying “that the proposal for heritage listing had not come up until the Anzac precinct became the government’s preferred site for the national Aboriginal art gallery”, she ought to be aware that often happens in regard to proposed redevelopment projects.
It’s not unusual (the recent failed nomination of the old Darwin Primary School at Frog Hollow is another example) and it’s also the right of any person under the NT Heritage Act (passed by Labor in 2011) to make such nominations.
After the conclusion of the mid-September committee meeting I spoke with Councillor Satour to suggest I could make a presentation to the Town Council about the nominations for heritage listing of Anzac Oval and the old school, given that the council had not sought to discuss these matters with me.
Councillor Satour seemed responsive to that idea but there was no follow-up.
I became concerned about heritage implications after learning in late 2017 of the Government’s intention to replace the former Anzac Hill High School as its preferred site for the National Aboriginal Art Gallery, and upon being informed this had not been taken into consideration I resolved at that time to nominate the old school for heritage listing.
The decision to nominate Anzac Oval came much later, after being prevailed upon by others to do so.
In December 2017 I wrote to Minister Lauren Moss explaining the historical background to the origin of heritage legislation in the Northern Territory which arose out of major controversies in Alice Springs in the late 1980s – clearly this message was lost on the Minister and her Parliamentary colleagues.

Recent Comments by Alex Nelson

Guarding his culture with spear, canvas and book
This is beautiful – the elegance of the custodian and the eloquence of the scribe.


Heritage Act: not worth the paper it is written on
As noted in this article, some of those present at the small rally in front of the old high school gates are warriors for the cause of heritage values and preservation in Alice Springs.
It was especially gratifying and highly significant to have Domenico Pecorari, Mike Gillam, and Jose Petrick lending their support for saving the former Anzac Hill High School.
These three were prominent (amongst others) who fought hard and determinedly to successfully save the old Alice Springs Gaol in Stuart Terrace over two decades ago – and look at their legacy, what a marvellous asset the old gaol has become as the home of the Women’s Museum of Australia.
It is a phenomenal achievement and a wonderful vindication of their vision.
The campaign to save the Old Alice Springs Gaol began on this day – October 22 – exactly 22 years ago.
On this day in 1997 the Minister for Lands, Planning and Environment, Mick Palmer, without warning (let alone consultation) unilaterally announced the Northern Territory Government had removed heritage protection for the gaol and it would be demolished and cleared as a green fields site for developers.
This ill-considered decision prompted enormous outrage and caused considerable reputational damage to the CLP.
The old gaol was saved but, in typically bloody-minded fashion, the NTG weakened the Heritage Conservation Act.
The Labor Party, which for so long while in opposition was at the forefront of hand-on-heart earnest defence of the NT’s heritage, has truly demonstrated its turncoat hypocrisy for the periods it has since been in power.
And so we find ourselves again confronted with another desperate campaign to save a major heritage asset on the northern edge of The Alice’s CBD with Labor in power, just as the town did 22 years ago in remarkably similar circumstances to save a major heritage asset on the southern edge of the town’s CBD when the CLP was in power.


Former Anzac Hill High School: time to take stock
@ Evelyne Roullet (Posted October 18, 2019 at 2:58 pm): I wish you good luck, Evelyne, but this town and the Territory is not what it once was, and there are very few who have the courage to stand up for their principles and convictions.
Most of us wait for someone else to do it all.


The good and the bad of spending money we don’t have
Ah yes, that lovely deep underground car park for public servants next to the NT Legislative Assembly, on which I henceforth bestow the title of “Labor’s long-drop”.
All that’s required to top off this most worthy project is a ceiling and very large fan.


Thieves ram cars out of compound
This is the same building the NT Government has vacated as its former departmental offices but (I am informed) continues to pay rent for the empty space.
Meanwhile, on the opposite side of Gregory Terrace and a short distance up is the public “asset” of the former Visitors Information Centre that has been abandoned, trashed and boarded up.
It’s all symptomatic of something seriously wrong with a Labor Government that three short years ago was elected overwhelmingly on the promise of being more honest and accountable.
The whole situation stinks to high hell.


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