National Trust of Australia (Queensland) 2019 Heritage Awards
Minister Enoch; Mayors and Councillors; our President, Dr Ian Galloway and Board Directors; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I at once acknowledge the traditional owners of the lands around Brisbane, and extend respectful greetings to Elders and emerging leaders.
As the current resident of Government House, one of the first ever listings on the Queensland Heritage Register, I am delighted to celebrate with you tonight another year of advocacy and achievement by the National Trust of Australia – Queensland… and to do so at this impressively refurbished precinct which seamlessly draws on the historical and the contemporary.
I am pleased to say that Government House continues to play a role in honouring our heritage.
Earlier this year we named a new, carefully constructed corridor on the estate after two prominent figures in the horticulture and landscaping heritage of our State, Ernest Bick and John Bailey.
This was particularly fitting because, in addition to their close association with the City Botanic Gardens, Bick and Bailey designed and supervised the layout of the formal gardens of the ‘new’ Government House in Paddington 1910.
Highlighting, protecting and conserving our heritage is a goal that the Trust has been pursuing with dedication and vigour since 1963.
This role is of crucial importance to the community. Queensland’s natural, Indigenous and broader cultural heritage is the key that unlocks memory and encourages us to understand our past and therefore our present.
And of crucial importance to the success of the Trust is its small army team of volunteers – more than 600 of them.
I know how vital the Government House team of volunteer guides is in explaining and interpreting the history of the House for thousands of visitors each year.
This is equally true of the volunteers who support the Trust’s heritage sites and projects – in guiding, education, administrative support, maintenance and in many more ways.
We know from first-hand experience that the Trust volunteers’ passion for Queensland’s history and heritage is palpable. And, like our Government House guides, their ‘happy, helpful and positive disposition’ – I’m quoting the Trust’s wonderful description – greatly enhances the experience for visitors.
As Governor and Patron of the Trust in Queensland, I thank the Trust’s volunteers most sincerely for contributing so generously their time and energy in support of the State’s heritage.
I thank and congratulate all of this evening’s deserving award winners for their marvellous and remarkably varied heritage achievements. I look forward to presenting the prestigious Lifetime Achievement and John Herbert Memorial Awards shortly.
And it is with great pleasure that I thank and congratulate the Trust’s Board, executive and staff on another successful year in championing our State’s precious heritage for Queenslanders now, and for future generations.