Narooma Arts Centre seeks $7.28m funds

Narooma School of Arts has applied for a $7.28m grant from the Bushfire Local Economic Recovery (BLER) Fund on behalf of the community to build the long awaited Narooma Arts & Community Centre (NACC).

“This would cover the full cost from detailed design, site works, construction and fitout, plus contingencies,” said School of Arts Vice President Jenny Hain.

“The NACC’s design and amenity has been extensively thought through over the past 10 years and is a development ready project well supported by our wider community. It has Development Consent from Council.

“Analysis shows the benefits of the NACC Project far outweigh the costs with major community health and wellbeing and cultural tourism benefits.”

Narooma School of Arts owns land and buildings on behalf of the community valued at $3m, and manages and enhances them on the community’s behalf for the Arts in its broadest sense. These buildings are the Kinema, Gallery and Studios.

The application with a substantial Business Case, Budget and Programme of Works, is the culmination of hundreds of hours work by the NACC Project Steering Group, assisted by architects CK Architecture (formerly ClarkeKeller).

The Group was formed late last year to provide appropriate skills, experience and capacity to assist the School of Arts committee in making the NACC a reality.

Ms Hain said the main School of Arts’ community embraces the area from Tuross Head, Bodalla and Nerrigundah to Bermagui and Cobargo, an area heavily impacted by bushfires from 31 December to early February 2020.

“This Project meets all assessment criteria for BLER funding,” she said. “The mental, physical and economic impact on the region has been considerable, impacts exacerbated by Covid-19 challenges.

“Our Narooma township played a critical regional evacuation role for over a month during the bushfires as a relatively safe haven including as the base for several hundred firefighters and Australian Defence Force personnel.

“We won’t hear for several months if we have been successful but meanwhile the Steering Group will be back at work to move this project forward,” Ms Hain said.

Above: Narooma School of Arts’ NACC Steering Group consists of Olaf Thiele, left, School of Arts Vice President Jenny Hain, Russell Burke, School of Arts Secretary Laurelle Pacey, Rob Hawkins and Wendy Ambler.