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Sovereign Hill brings Australia’s Gold Rush era to life


The Morrison Government’s $10.1 million in federal funding for Sovereign Hill Museums Association will now flow from the $50 million National Tourism Icons Program, with the Association launching its Master Plan on the attraction’s 50th anniversary today.

Assistant Minister for Regional Tourism Jonno Duniam said Sovereign Hill is an iconic tourist attraction that must be preserved and shared with future generations.

“Sovereign Hill is one of Australia’s most famous historical tourist attractions, and importantly, it supports local jobs and the economy,” Assistant Minister Duniam said.

“The Morrison Government is very proud to be supporting the delivery of the first stage of the Master Plan through our National Tourism Icons Program, with more than a $10 million investment that was committed at the last election.

“This investment and the Master Plan couldn’t be better timed, as Victoria and Australia chart a path to recovery after the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

“The delivery of the first stage of the Master Plan will play an integral role in the recovery of tourism and there are so many important projects that will come to life as a result of our investment in the plan.

“It’s also important to celebrate the significance of Sovereign Hill’s 50th anniversary; it’s an anniversary that’s traditionally marked with a gift of gold, which couldn’t be more fitting for this icon of Victoria, and indeed Australia.”

Senator for Victoria Sarah Henderson was delighted to attend the 50th anniversary event today.

“Sovereign Hill is a tourist icon in every sense of the word. It was a magical place to visit as a child and it remains one of the best tourism experiences in Australia for families, young and old,” Senator Henderson said.

“I congratulate Sovereign Hill on 50 very special years. I am delighted that our funding support of more than $10 million will not only support Sovereign Hill’s post-COVID recovery but help it become an even more significant tourist attraction for regional Victoria.

“Ballarat certainly struck gold when it opened Sovereign Hill in 1970!”

Phase one of the Master Plan includes the launch of a nationally significant Centre for Rare Arts and Forgotten Trades (CRAFT).

Visitors will be able to take part in hands-on workshops – from leather and metal crafts to paper printing and textiles, which are dedicated to keeping near forgotten trades and skills alive and thriving.

Phase one of the Master Plan also includes the launch of the Gold Pavilion and the Australian Centre for Gold Rush Collections which will house three distinct exhibition spaces, bringing the rich history of Australia’s gold rush era to life for visitors to Sovereign Hill and the Ballarat region.

Further information on this project can be found at

27 November 2020

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