LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Sir – I am a member of the McDouall Stuart branch of the National Trust and a councillor on the NT National Trust.
We are very concerned about the NT Government’s plans to demolish the Anzac Hill high school.
I am also a traditional owner of Alice Springs. I attended the Anzac Hill school, along with lots of Aboriginal people and I would like to see those buildings stay there.
At a meeting of our National Trust committee a couple of weeks ago we decided that we should meet with Eva Lawler, the Minister for Infrastructure, at the Alice Springs Show to talk about saving the school.
The government believes the buildings are degraded and dilapidated and are a safety risk. We do not agree. We have photos taken only a week earlier and the buildings inside and outside, are still in excellent condition.
David Hewitt, the local National Trust vice-president and I made an appointment to meet the Minister at 11.30am on Friday at the Labor Party stand at the show.
She did not turn up till after 12 o’clock. We were very disappointed that Ms Lawler did not want to hear what we were saying and was not interested in the photos that we had. She kept interrupting every time I started to say something, even when I said “you have to listen”.
I also mentioned my thoughts on the Indigenous Art Centre, that it must go south of the Gap. The Government made a promise to build it near the Desert Knowledge Centre. But Ms Lawler said the art centre was going in the business area of the town.
It is very sad that the Government will not even listen to what is being said by the people about the Anzac Hill high school and the Art Centre. They must sit down, talk to local people and think about what they are doing, before the Government makes these decisions.
PHOTO courtesy Alex Nelson. We have offered Ms Lawler the right of reply.
UPDATE August 1
The NT Government let a tender on July 23 for $1.9m to McMahon Services Australia (NT) Pty Ltd under the title “Anzac Hill School – Demolition Works”.