06 Jan NSW Premier joins Kempsey Shire Council to support Slim
The Kempsey Shire Council public forum has formed the stage for an announcement of funding from The Hon. Barry O’Farrell MP, Premier of NSW, for the Slim Dusty Centre in Kempsey.
Joy McKean OAM, addressed Council to thank supporters, and update Councillors on the position and progress of the Slim Dusty Centre project, especially in light of a $100,000 donation made by Council in March this year.
“I am very pleased to advise everybody of the interest and practical support shown by the Premier, Mr Barry O’Farrell MP. He has granted a sum of $100,000 to the Slim Dusty Foundation to assist with the cost of the road works. Their completion will enable public access to the Centre” said Joy McKean, speaking from Slim’s hometown.
The Premier voiced his support for this major cultural tourism attraction. “I’m delighted to support this important project that will honour the legendary musician and performer who contributed so much to Australian music and culture,” Mr O’Farrell said. “Through his music and song writing Slim told distinctive Australian stories about life on the land and the country musicians of today owe much to his legacy.”
Premier O’Farrell’s contribution from the Rural and Regional Miscellaneous Grant Fund will directly assist with roadwork leading to the new Slim Dusty Centre, and matches the donation made from Kempsey Shire Council. With support already raised in the form of donated materials, silt fencing and GHD’s donation of in kind Project Management of the works, the Slim Dusty Foundation is now over halfway to meeting the full funding requirements to complete the access.
Kathryn Yarnold, CEO of the Slim Dusty Foundation, spoke of the very positive reaction to the news of the State Government support. “The news was met with applause, nods of approval and smiles all around the Council Chambers” she said. “The roadwork remains our priority. We are currently investigating the timeframe and current cost estimates of the interface road works. The Foundation has submitted an Expression of Interest with an infrastructure program that, if successful, will provide the final funding and allow the Centre to open to the public. This will enable people to start using the Centre for events, travelling exhibitions, café, retail and hopefully, the Visitor Information Centre.”
Kempsey Mayor, Councillor Liz Campbell, reiterated the appreciation of Mr O’Farrell’s much needed support.
“The Kempsey Shire Council congratulates the Slim Dusty Centre on receiving the support of the Premier and the State Government. This again indicates the confidence and belief in the Kempsey area and in particular the economic, employment and cultural importance the Slim Dusty Centre will bring to our region With the announcement of the grant funding from the State Government we move another step closer to completion.”
Joy concluded in her acknowledgement of supporters from right across the nation. “We are all very grateful for Mr O’Farrell’s recognition of the value of this major iconic attraction being built in NSW. To all of Slim’s other mates around Australia who continue to support us to get the Centre up and running, a big thank you to you all”