A need for a rethink on Eureka
The recently renamed Eureka centre is in urgent need of some love and care, as it is slowly fading into history. Our government spends millions of dollars each year on the upkeep of war cemeteries on the Western front, and many other sites worldwide, and so it should, remembering and acknowledging those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in order for us to have the fantastic lifestyle we enjoy today, and so often take for granted. The Eureka site is also one of those places where we should in the first place recognise, that the events that took place there most definatly contributed to the Australian way of life as we know it. and that site, a place of tremendous historical importance is here in Ballarat, and we are the custodians. Unfortunately we have, and are taking it for granted,
Lets explore the possibilities of a tourist information centre with extras. In the first place the position is ideal for visitors/tourists coming into Ballarat from the Melbourne side, and the parking facilities are ideal. The stockade would need to be reconstructed with advice and support from sovereign hill staff, given the experience available. The site would have a mine shaft with sails etc replicating the gravel pits as at the time of the eureka events. The staff would dress in period costume adding to the overall ambiance, and actors [volunteers] could deliver Peter Lalor's address periodically, and the museum would be filled with the Eureka event/period memorabilia. The Café could offer damper etc as another add on enhancing the ambiance. The Eureka site could be, and should be a welcoming gateway into Ballarat, and an introduction to the history of our wonderful city, and it should encourage visitors to further explore Sovereign hill, the gold museum, the wildlife park etc and create an awareness of the many interesting places to discover in our culture rich city and surrounding district.
Jack Engwerda, Lake Wendouree