Thursday, June 20, 2024

History and hi-tech locked in for goal project

Northern Areas Council has announced a major project which is set to shine a spotlight on the region’s historic Gladstone Gaol, with cutting edge technology to engage visitors and illuminate the local landmark.

In collaboration with the South Australian Department for Environment and Water, the National Trust is currently working on a permanent light projection installation at the Gaol, similar to the light projections on the Karoonda and Quorn silos.

The Gaol, which holds an important place in South Australian history, will provide a canvas for Illuminart – a renowned creative arts company specialising in illumination and storytelling experiences.

Council says this unique approach offers heritage interpretation that will appeal to history buffs, film-noir fans and travellers who are looking for a taste of mystery and drama.

Key features will include:

  • Light and projection: to illuminate the gaol’s exterior with historical images, videos, and animations, providing a dynamic and immersive experience;
  • Soundscapes and music: will accompany the visual elements, enhancing the emotional connection to the stories being told;
  • Historical storytelling: sharing the intriguing history of Gladstone Gaol, allowing visitors to engage with the site’s past and gain a deeper understanding of its significance.

The transformation is part of the Silver to Sea Way project funded by the Australian Government with a commitment of close to $6.6 million.

The works will also include the restoration of the former Jamestown Railway Goods Shed, including a new ramp to improve visitor access and conservation work aimed at stabilising the structures, flooring and guttering.

The National Trust of South Australia’s Silver to Sea Way project has embarked on a series of heritage revitalisation projects at four remarkable sites: Peterborough, Jamestown, Gladstone and Port Pirie, connecting towns with new visitor experiences. The railway line connecting the towns was once one of the world’s busiest and played a crucial role transporting a staggering 43 million tonnes of ore containing silver and lead from Broken Hill to Port Pirie, significantly contributing to Australia’s economic success.

President of the Gladstone Tourism and Development Association, David Catford said the town was excited to see the Gaol opening again and the project would provide a spectacular attraction for the region.

“Gladstone Gaol Immersive Activation is not just a project; it’s a vision for a brighter and more vibrant Gladstone. We look forward to having people from far and wide join us in this remarkable journey to illuminate our town,” Mr Catford said.

Northern Areas Council last month approved sites for local signage which forms part of the storytelling for Silver to Seaway.

Mayor, Sue Scarman said the project would bring a fresh audience to the region.

“What a brilliant opportunity for our towns to showcase their offerings, in a new and exciting way. It allows people of all ages to enjoy history and technology in partnership,” she said.

“This project promises to make Gladstone Gaol a must-visit destination for history enthusiasts, families and tourists. It adds to the cultural enrichment of our region and will provide an opportunity for the community to connect with their heritage.”

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