15 March 2023

Libs pledge to spend $1.1m on Yass Memorial Soldiers Hall

| Sally Hopman
Start the conversation
Building with Happy Birthday streamer across it.

With a busy few weeks trying to save and then move its priceless archives from the Soldiers Memorial Hall to a new, temporary home, the Yass & District Historical Society also managed to find time to mark the hall’s 100th birthday on 9 March. Photo: Supplied.

A returned Liberal-National NSW Government would give $1.1 million to upgrade the historical Yass Soldiers Memorial Hall.

The pledge was made in Yass today (Tuesday, 14 March) by the NSW Minister for Infrastructure Rob Stokes and Member for Goulburn Wendy Tuckerman.

The hall, which recently celebrated its 100th birthday, was the centre of controversy recently when the Yass Valley Council (YVC) gave the Yass & District Historical Society (YDHS) notice of eviction from rooms on the top floor of the building.

The YDHS was told by the council, on 31 January, 2023, it had to leave the premises by 20 February, an impossible task, according to the society, which is made up of volunteers.

There was concern by the YDHS and the Yass community at large about what would happen to the priceless collection of historical archives belonging to the society if it were moved quickly and to a location where its care could not be guaranteed.

READ ALSO Priceless Yass archive collection saved from eviction – for now

On 15 February, Labor candidate for Goulburn Michael Pilbrow visited Yass and pledged that, if elected, his government would allocate $60,000 to restore the hall and ensure the YDHS had a permanent home.

Earlier this month, Mrs Tuckerman worked with the YVC and the NSW Government to find a new temporary home for the archives – in the town’s former ambulance station. The YDHS has about 12 months’ reprieve at the station, but must find a permanent home to safeguard the collection and the service it provides to users locally, nationally and internationally.

The priceless Yass archives collection, which has been amassed over about 40 years, goes back 200 years. It includes a variety of documents and ephemera, and a rare collection of wartime glass negatives.

Speaking in Yass today, Mrs Tuckerman said she welcomed the investment in the Yass Valley and she looked forward to the Soldiers Hall project progressing.

READ ALSO Labor pledges to save Yass history archive after Council threatens to evict volunteers

“I am so pleased we are able to make this commitment, ensuring not only the restoration of the memorial hall but also its improvement,” she said.

“Yass Soldiers Memorial Hall was constructed 100 years ago and funded through community donations. It is used regularly by a limited number of community groups but this could certainly be expanded with improved and more expanded facilities.”

Mrs Tuckerman said the hall committee had identified several areas where improvements would revitalise the venue and enable a wider use, including upgrading the food service area, the lighting, heating, storage and seating.

NSW Minister for Infrastructure Rob Stokes said halls such as the Yass memorial played a crucial role in bringing the community together.

“This investment will ensure the Yass Soldiers Memorial Hall can be upgraded to meet this need and to support a wider range of use by the community.”

Start the conversation

Daily Digest

Do you like to know what’s happening around your region? Every day the About Regional team packages up our most popular stories and sends them straight to your inbox for free. Sign-up now for trusted local news that will never be behind a paywall.

By submitting your email address you are agreeing to Region Group's terms and conditions and privacy policy.