Michelle Roberts

Michelle Roberts

Minister for Housing and Works; Indigenous Affairs; Heritage; Land Information

    Top honours in 2007 Heritage Council Awards

    31/05/2007 9:00 AM

    A passionate self-taught historian, botanical artist, genealogist and author has joined the Town of Vincent and Shire of Beverley in taking out the top honours at this year’s Heritage Council awards.

    The awards have been held annually since 1992 and were presented by Heritage Minister Michelle Roberts.

    “The awards pay tribute to the individuals and organisations whose work has made significant achievements in the promotion and conservation of Western Australia’s cultural heritage,” Mrs Roberts said.

    “We are all products of our heritage and we can never under-estimate the importance it has played in shaping our lives.”

    Nedlands resident Dr Rica Erickson won the individual award for her lifelong contribution to heritage in WA.

    “Dr Erickson has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to the cause of cultural heritage for more than half a century,” the Minister said.

    “In the 1950s and 1960s, Dr Erickson successfully campaigned to save the Toodyay Gaol. This was at a time when the importance of heritage conservation was just starting to be appreciated. Today, the gaol is a highly valued regional museum.

    “Her published works are standard references for heritage practitioners and historians.

    “Dr Erickson’s generosity in sharing her knowledge and passion has provided WA with a priceless legacy and makes her a most worthy recipient of this award.”

    The Heritage Award is the latest in a string of accolades for the former Bolgart (north-east of Toodyay) resident who turns 99 in August.

    The Town of Vincent won the organisation award for its contribution to municipal heritage management through its successful Municipal Heritage Inventory (MHI) review project.

    The award also recognises the town’s tireless work since the 1980s to protect and preserve its many heritage buildings, including the recent heritage listing of the Brookman and Moir Streets precinct.

    “The Town of Vincent is an exemplary example of local government actively valuing and supporting heritage conservation,” the Minister said.

    The conservation of a place on the State Register of Heritage Places Award was won by the Shire of Beverley for its preservation of the Beverley Railway Station.

    The George Temple Poole designed station was built in 1886 and closed in October 1984. It had fallen into disrepair and was destined for demolition before local protest action saved it.

    In 1996, the Beverley Railway Station joined the State Register of Heritage Places.

    Mrs Roberts said the shire took responsibility for the planning, funding, management and restoration of the station.

    “The magnitude of the task in restoring the Beverley Railway Station was substantial and the result is a credit to the shire and residents of Beverley,” she said.

    “The station was transformed into a local arts centre and is today the cultural hub of the shire.”

    The Minister also presented certificates to the finalists of each category and these were:

    Individual Award:
    • Wendy Durant from the Rockingham District Historical Society; and
    • Les Bail of Whale World in Albany.
    Organisation Award:
    • Shire of Coolgardie;
    • Busselton Jetty Environment and Conservation Association;
    • Wheatbelt Work Camp; and
    • The Morsecodians Fraternity WA.
    Conservation Project Award:
    • John and Jessica Csendes for restoration of their workers cottage at King St, East Fremantle;
    • Yanchep National Park Volunteer Group for restoration of Tram 57 at Yanchep National Park; and
    • Rottnest Island Authority for conservation of the Timber Bungalows at Thomson Bay.
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