Finalists for the 2020 Western Australian Heritage Awards have been announced, with the Margaret River region highlighted across five different categories. The awards are conducted by the Heritage Council and celebrate the dedication and high-quality work being undertaken in Western Australia in areas related to heritage tourism.
The Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse Precinct is named as a finalist in three categories (Interpretation Project, Heritage Tourism Product, and Conservation or Adaptive Reuse of a State Registered Place), while the Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association (MRBTA) is a finalist in the category of Private or Public Organisation. MRBTA Asset and Environment Manager, Mark Delane being named as a finalist in the Professional Contribution category completes the nominations for the region.
This is the first formal recognition received for the recently developed Interpretive Centre at Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse, which was opened to the public in December 2019. The interpretive space is located in one of the original lighthouse keeper cottages and shares the history of the site through artefacts, short stories, interactive technology, and a large-scale animated film. Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse recommenced operations last month as part of Phase 2 of the COVID-19 WA Roadmap.
Rikki Andrew, site manager at Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse commented on the high quality experience for visitors to the site; “The visitor experience at Cape Leeuwin has been transformed from an already brilliant guided lighthouse tour with stunning views to an amazing interactive storytelling experience which gives a real insight into what life was like for our lighthouse keepers. It’s a massive credit to everyone involved and the team is very proud to be a part of it.”
MRBTA Joint CEO Steve Harrison, said it was exciting that the hard work that has gone into improving the site has been formally recognised; “Cape Leeuwin Lighthouse is a key drawcard for visitors to the region and is MRBTA’s highest visited attraction. MRBTA has an ongoing commitment to preserve the historical site and continue to keep up with demands of the modern traveller by improving the visitor experience. The organisation is proud of this achievement and we look forward to the announcement of the winners.”
The 2020 finalists include both Aboriginal and historic heritage, and span both the metropolitan and regional areas. The Minister for Heritage will announce the winners via a media statement at the end of this month.