LLEW O’BRIEN SECURES $700,000 EXPANSION FOR MARYBOROUGH’S MILITARY AND COLONIAL MUSEUM
Maryborough Military and Colonial Museum, which is home to the most extensive collection of war memorabilia outside of Canberra’s Australia War Memorial, will receive a $700,000 expansion, thanks to a grant secured by Federal Member for Wide Bay and Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Llew O’Brien and announced in the 2022-23 Budget.
Mr O’Brien said the grant would be used to purchase a new building to display the 10,000 plus-strong collection, which includes chapters of all Australian theatres of war, from Gallipolli to Afghanistan.
“Outside of Canberra, the Maryborough Military and Colonial Museum is the best military Museum in the nation,” Mr O’Brien said.
“This expansion and fit-out will add to the Fraser Coast Military Trail and attract visitors to Maryborough to help grow the economy, by supporting cafes, restaurants, and accommodation providers.
Mr O’Brien said the award-winning tourism attraction educates thousands of visitors and students each month, staffed entirely by more than 100 passionate volunteers, many of whom served themselves.
“The volunteers know the importance of preserving our military history and teaching young people about how the sacrifice of our veterans and service personnel helped secure the freedoms we enjoy today,” Mr O’Brien said.
“This grant allows volunteers to continue to share the stories of military personnel who sacrificed their lives to protect Australia in a new environment, by allowing the Maryborough Military and Colonial Museum to grow and include even more valuable displays in addition to the weapons, uniforms, vehicles, furniture, and significant medals there today.”
Maryborough Military & Colonial Museum Director John Meyers welcomed the $700,000 investment, which will allow new memorabilia to be displayed while better presenting others, such as the most extensive medal collection of Gallipoli.
“We welcome this assistance by the government towards further improving the museum for future generations,” Mr Meyers said.
“It is well identified by the Fraser Coast Regional Council and Fraser Coast Tourism and Events that our Museum is a significant part of tourism in this district and supports a robust local economy.
“We sincerely thank Llew O’Brien for his efforts in pushing for this grant on our behalf.”
Mr Meyers said the Museum has more than 100 volunteers and is open seven days a week, educating more than 10,000 visitors a year.
“Since opening in 2005, the museum has acquired many new military and colonial items, and in moving to larger premises, we will be able to show these and many more,” he said.
Mr O’Brien said the Museum was a reminder of the diplomacy required to ensure global stability.
“As we experience greater global uncertainty with a war in Europe, we must invest in protecting our military history so the devastating realities of war are not forgotten.
“It is a stark reminder of courage, bravery and sacrifice.”