Touchdown” of Heritage strategy protecting Canberra’s history

Released 12/02/2016

Minister for Planning and Land Management, Mick Gentleman has today stood on the foundations of the Honeysuckle tracking station, the communications centre for the Apollo 11 moon landing to announce a new heritage strategy to continue to protect and preserve Canberra’s historic landmarks.

“The Heritage Strategy will be an important framework for the recognition, protection, conservation and promotion of heritage places and objects in the ACT and will set a clear direction for a five year period,” Minister Gentleman said.

“A great example of these important heritage sites is the Honeysuckle tracking station, which is Canberra’s newest heritage listed site. Honeysuckle played an important communications role in the Apollo 11 mission, cementing the ACT within this important world event.

“Honeysuckle is an important part of my family’s history, with my father in charge of receiving communications from Honeysuckle at the Central Telephone exchange, which was located within East block at the time. After my father received the communication the exchange connected to the Deakin exchange, which passed all information over to NASA.

“It is great to see that this important location will now be protected throughout time, with its history celebrated through the range of information now available on the site. This strategy will ensure that we as a Government continue to ensure these important and significant landmarks are preserved. The ACT’s unique story of our rich and diverse heritage will be recognised through the strategy and it will consider Aboriginal and European heritage places and objects along with our natural heritage.

“Our heritage places and objects provide us with a sense of pride, place, identity, and belonging. The strategy will provide opportunity to revisit what is important about our heritage places and objects, to reshape the way that the community and visitors think about and engage with their heritage, and to refocus resources to ensure that the highest priority areas receive the greatest attention

“The strategy will provide a vision for the ways in which we can incorporate our heritage places and objects into our future city.

Information sessions will be held on Tuesday 23 and Wednesday 24 February 2016. The key topics on which the ACT Government would like community input are detailed through the background information and questions in the discussion paper.

“I encourage all those with an interest in the ACT’s heritage to have a say and provide valuable input toward the strategy that will support heritage for our capital,” Minister Gentleman concluded.

The discussion paper and details about the information sessions and how to submit feedback, is available at

Public comment is being sought until 9am Tuesday 29 March 2016.

- Statement ends -

Section: Mick Gentleman, MLA | Media Releases

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