A vital piece of Western Victoria’s history has been safeguarded for future generations, with the help of a grant from the Victorian Government.
The Government contributed $200,000 from the Living Heritage Program towards the restoration of Captain John Mills House in Port Fairy, one of the earliest surviving timber structures in Victoria.
The restoration of the cottage, built in stages in the 1840s and 1850s, involved materials conservators from the University of Melbourne and tradespeople using traditional building skills suitable for the time.
Our Living Heritage program has helped protect an amazing collection of wallpapers dating back to the 1850s, with more than 50 wallpaper patterns found throughout the building. Conservators worked to stabilise these wallpapers.
Works included re-plastering the damaged walls and ceilings with lime plaster and repairing timber windows, linings and other detailing. The now completed works have allowed for increased public access to this unique building, ensuring it can be enjoyed by the local community and visitors.
The Living Heritage Program is the largest ever State Government investment in the conservation of heritage places and objects. Thanks to a $20.5 million boost in the 2019-20 State Budget, the program now comprises a total fund of $60 million, including over $18.5 million for a competitive community heritage grants program targeting ‘at risk’ heritage places and over $38 million for major building grants for the conservation of iconic, publicly accessible heritage places with complex needs.
Mills’ Cottage is one of 92 projects funded to date since the program’s inception in 2016.
Round 4 of the Living Heritage Program closed in May 2019, and announcements of successful projects are expected from late August.
Quotes attributable to Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney
“This building means so much to so many Port Fairy locals. It’s a striking reminder of our significant history.”
“Heritage sites like these aren’t just bricks and mortar, they’re our very identity. This is a fantastic example of what our Living Heritage Program is all about.”
“We’re so proud to have helped conserve this important historical building for future generations.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning, Richard Wynne
“We’re proud of our Living Heritage Program, providing much needed grants to projects that address risks to historically important places all across Victoria.”