Funding for Fountain Restoration Project

Posted Thursday 15 March, 08:56am

The restoration of the Ararat Boer War Memorial Fountain has received a boost with Ararat Community Enterprise (ACE) pledging $10,000 to the project.

At February’s ordinary meeting, Ararat Rural City Council moved a motion to seek grant applications for the fountain restoration and support community fundraising opportunities.

Ararat Community Enterprise was launched in 2007 and is a not-for-profit charity organisation that contributes back into the community. The Board of Management is made up of local people.

Ararat Rural City Council Deputy Mayor, Cr Gwenda Allgood said it was exciting news that ACE had announced that it would kick start the restoration project with a sizable donation.

The Ararat Boer War Memorial fountain is located in front of the Ararat Town Hall, and is a focal point for the civic precinct.

The fountain was originally built to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee and the recognise the Ararat’s contribution to the Boer War in which local people went off to defend the British empire.

“There is a strong connection for the people of Ararat to this civic fountain and this council recognises its importance and is committed to finding funding for its restoration,” Cr Allgood said.

Cr Allgood said it was important to note that it was not included in the current redevelopment of the Ararat Arts Precinct, as it did not meet the state or federal funding guidelines of that project, however attention needs to be paid to the rundown monument to give the finishing touch to the new facility.

“There has been a number of attempts to fund the restoration and funding applications that date back to 2009, but unfortunately they were unsuccessful,” Cr Allgood said.

“Whilst the problem has been talked about for many years there has never been any detailed investigation of the works required or the cost.

Ararat Rural City has also made a funding application to the Federal Government’s Building Better Regions Infrastructure Fund and is hopeful that success will allow the project to commence early this year.

Cr Allgood said in order to progress the restoration Council has fully costed the works with an experienced heritage restoration expert and plumber and have now have a real figure of $125,400.

“It is also important for funding applications to show our level of community support and contribution, so we are looking for assistance with this part of the project,” Cr Allgood said.

“We see this as one of our priority projects and are keen to see this Ararat icon restored to its full potential.”