Over the last twelve months the Heritage Subcommittee has sought to improve the protection of Glebe’s heritage through providing information, working to improve understanding and through advocacy.
Following the sale, and in advance of the DA proposals for 357 Glebe Point Rd, Subcommittee member Erica Robinson wrote a major Bulletin article to alert members to the merits and value of Edmund Blacket’s Bidura (c1860). Subsequently the Subcommittee provided input on heritage-related issues as part of the Society’s wider response to the Concept Envelope design (Stage 1 DA). The over-arching issues raised by the DA are complex and wide-ranging but the Heritage Subcommittee’s principal concern was and remains that the history, fabric and integrity of Bidura, in its setting, is respected and maintained.
On the 20th anniversary of its completion, John Symonds talked to members about the construction of the Anzac Bridge. We are grateful for Meg Wallace’s facilitation of this event. The Subcommittee continues to press for the restoration of the Glebe Island Bridge (1903). The work of promoting its subsequent re-use as a light rail/cycle/pedestrian conduit is now outside our brief.
The Subcommittee, energised by Lydia Bushell, contributed over 200 hand-knitted/crocheted red poppies to the Glebe Society’s Anzac Centenary exhibition. Our objective was to recognise individually those Glebe men who fell in the conflict. The Subcommittee also arranged the annual Remembrance Day Service at the Diggers’ Memorial. The gathering was addressed by Max Solling, our late Deputy Lord Mayor Robyn Kemmis and Lyn Collingwood.
The occasional series, Rearview, has continued to appear in the Bulletin with interviews by Margaret Cody of long-time residents giving their unique perspective of life in Glebe. Subcommittee members have also contributed photographic essays on ceramic wall panels (Anne Owens) and shop tops (Anne Owens and Peter Crawshaw). From the Terraces continues to provide heritage news and views.
Peter Crawshaw and Robert Hannan have obtained the necessary approvals and are planning to have a number of old maps of Glebe included on the Glebe Society website.
We have maintained a watching brief on a number of conservation and maintenance issues in relation to both built and green heritage environments in Glebe. All Subcommittee members have contributed to this process and Robert Hannan has been particularly helpful in relation to green heritage.
We are starting to think about the Glebe Society’s 50th anniversary which will be celebrated in 2019 and to reflect on how the Heritage Subcommittee can meaningfully contribute to the Society’s general celebrations. Ros Jehne and Lydia Bushell are significant contributors to this process.
The wider heritage environment in NSW does not inspire confidence. It is acknowledged that governments have a responsibility to provide infrastructure to meet the needs of a growing population. However, it is alarming that in the case of WestConnex, this has meant cutting a vast swathe through a Conservation Area. With this action, Government has demonstrated a total disregard of history and community and seriously devalued its own heritage assessments.
We were sorry to farewell Meg Wallace who had made a terrific contribution to the establishment of our Glebe Island Bridge website. On a happier note, I would like to thank members of the Heritage Subcommittee. To Lydia Bushell, Margaret Cody, Peter Crawshaw, Robert Hannan, Ros Jehne, Anne Owens and Erica Robinson, thank you for bringing to the table such an amazing array of talents, interests, commitment and energy.