Monthly Archives: November 2013

Save Civic Hall learns from Port Fairy

The story of a community successfully fighting to save something it regards as special is not unique.

A public meeting at Ballarat Library at 3pm Sunday 10 November will hear how the community of Crossley, near Port Fairy, combined forces to save St Brigid’s Church.

The community was outraged when the church hierarchy decided to sell its church and hall. The battle for St Brigid’s went all the way to Rome, with support from human rights lawyer Frank Brennan and indigenous elders Archie Roach and the late Ruby Hunter.

Conservation officer and writer, Regina Lane, will speak on Sunday about what inspired her local community to take action and what the Friends of St Brigid’s learned along their journey.

Lane is now publishing a book about the church, which was built and paid by children of the Irish famine. She said, “It was to uphold their legacy that I decided to stand up alongside my community and fight to protect it.”

This meeting is also an opportunity for supporters of retention of the Ballarat Civic Hall to hear an update from the new overarching community body, Save Civic Hall.

A number of working groups have been formed in the areas of activation of the Civic Hall, adaptive reuse and other alternatives, tourism, heritage, governance, communications /media, fundraising, indigenous and youth involvement.

On Sunday coordinators from each of these groups and the main committee will report back on what is planned and how the community can be further involved.