Wednesday 21 January 2015

Cairns and District Chinese Association

The Heritage Co-ordinator for the Cairns Chinese Association, Mrs Mary Low reported that 2014 had been a year of steady progress in terms of their heritage and collection management goals.  Various tasks undertaken included museum database entry, library resource management and cataloguing the Cairns Chinatown collection, as well as researching and conserving objects and photos.  Members of the Heritage section took the opportunity to participate in a number of training workshops during the year including a Social Media workshop conducted by the State Library of Queensland and then five members participated in an ABC Open photographic and video editing workshop.  This resulted in the production of video stories about five objects from the Lit Sung Goong collection which can now be viewed on the Association's website.  The Chinatown Oral History Research is the group's current major research project with three interviews already completed.  A RADF grant was used to engage consultant Jan Cattoni to assist and train the group in interview techniques and recording skills.  The Association was also pleased to have acquired the collection of the late Kevin Wong Hoy.  Kevin's family donated the collection which included eighty-six books relating to Chinese-Australian history and culture.  A number of community engagements have proved very successful during the year and the Heritage Group's main aspiration is still to be able to exhibit and provide a permanent home for the collections that are now being developed.  The group would like to see the Cultural Centre Project at the top of the Assosciation's agenda in this coming year.

Monday 12 January 2015

Heritage North

The last meeting of the Heritage North Association for the year included the Annual General Meeting for 2014 and saw a number of alterations to the committee.  Mr Travis Teske of the Mulgrave Historical Society took over as President for the coming year with Mrs Cheryl Belbin taking on the position of Secretary.  Mrs Suzanne Gibson was thanked for her efforts over the years as Secretary and it was decided to present Mr Gil Jennex with a certificate to acknowledge his twenty years as Editor of the Heritage North's quarterly newsletter.  Representatives of six member groups then presented annual reports from their Societies which will be included in the next newsletter to be sent out in January.  The general meeting then saw a discussion about topics for training workshops for the coming year with suggestions mostly concerning understanding technology such as using Facebook, Website development and Online research techniques.  Suzanne then spoke on how the Cairns Historical Society will be getting professional advice to assist in re-branding the look and feel of the organization when the new museum opens along the lines of Cairns, the Tropical City.  She thought this expertise might provide some opportunities for other Heritage North members.  The next meeting will be held in El Arish at the end of February.

Historic Railway Group

The railway history buffs at the Atherton-Herberton Historic Railway have been hard at work on their project.  With the pulling up of the line from Atherton to Mareeba the group was able to obtain, at scrap iron prices, hundreds of the old experimental steel sleepers that Queensland Rail had put on that line.  These are now been used to upgrade the Herberton line so they can start using a lighter steam train on the track from the Herberton Station out to the History Village.  The group's Treasurer, Mr Don Lamb informed me that fundraising was about the only thing holding the group back and the re-opening of the whole line back to Atherton is still the aim of the organization.  It is good to see something happening on this line again.