The Central Tilba School of Arts Trust is excited about turning the Big Hall into a more inviting venue for concerts and speaking engagements.
Trust president Janine Halasz said it was great news that the grant application had been successful.
She met with project supporters at the hall on Friday, October 27 to discuss plans to spend a $31,046 grant from the NSW Government on improving the hall’s acoustics.
“It’s like the rain, it came at just the right time,” Mrs Halasz said.
Trust member and project supporter Harry Bate first applied for a grant to improve the hall’s acoustics back in 2009 but was unsuccessful.
This time, he and the trust had the backing of well-respected acoustics engineer David Connor, who happens to live at nearby Mystery Bay.
Mr Connor was at one the trivia nights at the hall when he commented on the poor quality of the sound and that this was his area of expertise.
The rest is history and he has donated his time to draw up a plan that Mr Bate used to apply for the grant.
Mr Connor was currently away working on an acoustic project at a Perth stadium but would be back soon to help with the project to install sections of sound-absorbing tiles on the roof and gables of the Big Hall.
Interestingly, only about one quarter of the Big Hall’s interior will be covered by the acoustic tiles, including one large section on the roof and also the back gable.
On the gable above the stage, there will be panel of different, perforated tiles.
Project supporter Bill Southwood, who has also been involved with the Four Winds venue at Bermagui, said the idea was to keep enough liveliness in the sound, so it didn't sound dead.
“We don’t want to kill the sound totally and there still needs to be some reverberation, so a range of scenarios was modelled,” Mr Southwood said.
The plan is to install the panels next year and local contractors will be employed to install the panels.
Then it is hoped the Big Hall will be a more attractive venue for concerts and other events and the Trust hopes extra bookings will help them maintain both it and the adjacent Small Hall.
“We will be putting the word out that we’ve got this funding and we want you to come and use it,” Mrs Halasz said.
Member for Bega Andrew Constance announced that Central Tilba School of Arts Trust would receive a NSW Government heritage grant to enable the hall acoustics to be upgraded.
The $31,046 grant was one of almost 40 grants awarded under the latest round of the Government’s Heritage Near Me Activation Grants Program.
Mr Constance said this grant will allow installation of acoustic panelling in the large Central Tilba hall, which was built 1911, that fitted will reduce reverberation time sufficiently, to allow clear intelligibility of speech and usability of the Hall as a multi-purpose venue.
“At present the hall is significantly impaired due to poor acoustics, this grant will see it transformed,” Mr Constance said.
“This funding doesn’t only mean we can invest in protecting and preserving our local heritage but it means we’re giving more people the opportunity to appreciate their local history,
“These grants acknowledge and support the vital role owners and managers of locally listed heritage items play in protecting our local heritage.”
The Trust is involved in lots of work at both the Big and Small Halls, including resanding and polishing the floors and stage of the Small Hall and a refurbished kitchen area.
For more information on the Heritage Near Me program, including the Heritage Activation Grant program, visit www.environment.nsw.gov.au/heritage/heritage-support.htm
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