This morning (21/2/22), Sussan Ley, Federal Minister for the Environment, visited Torquay to announce the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program funding of 1.4 Million dollars for the upgrade of the old Sport and Recreation Centre (the new Multi Arts Centre).

The funding will be used to repair rooves and fixtures that bang and wobble in strong winds, leaking ceilings that pour water into the electrical works offstage, noisy downpipes that sound like nails dropping into a tin bucket when it rains, noisy and inefficient heating that takes 40 minutes to heat the space and sounds a bit like a hot air balloon taking off, electrical works to the lighting so the gallery and theatre can have their own lighting on different switches, acoustics analysis to stop the space echoing, internal and external signage and other things to make the building NEARER to fit-for-purpose.

Libby Stapleton (Shire Mayor), at the podium below, gave a short introduction to the grant and told of the value and importance of creative arts across the Community. Sussan Ley (in yellow on the right) spoke about the importance of arts and community development – especially in the face of challenging climatic conditions. She explained that her electorate in western NSW had faced droughts and floods and that creative arts are a way of dealing with adversity. She introduced local Liberal candidate for Corangamite, Stephanie Asher (far right below).

Read more in the Surf Coast Times next week.

All of this is quite an achievement for a couple of small community-based organisations intent on making something happen for the growing arts community.

You can get on board if you would like to contribute to the Board of Management of The MAC Inc., the lessors of the Multi Arts Centre. They are seeking a representative to be on their Committee. If you’re interested, click here to contact George Carman, President

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