Leanne Howard

The Daylesford Museum Reserve Committee of Management (DMRCoM) and about 20  members of the Daylesford Community Brass Band and Daylesford and District Historical Society, welcomed Member for Ballarat, Catherine King, and Member for Macedon, Mary-Anne Thomas, to the Museum Reserve on Friday 25th August to celebrate their Flood Recovery Grant. The grant of $245,771 is to undertake repairs to the building, in particular the Band Room which is home to the Daylesford Community Brass Band following the October and November 2022 floods.

The 2022 floods were one of the worst Victorian flood disasters on record and caused significant damage across 64 of Victoria’s 79 local government areas, affecting many community spaces and assets. The Australian and Victorian Governments are supporting communities to restore treasured recreation areas and facilities damaged by the floods in October and November 2022 and have jointly funded recovery works under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements. Funding is to support volunteer Committees of Management to repair, reinstate or rebuild facilities, land and assets on Crown land reserves that have been impacted by these floods. The funding is also intended to improve the resilience of Crown land assets in case of future extreme weather events.

The heavy rain and flooding during October 2022 entered the Museum building through the roof and under the floor, affecting the Band Room in particular. Fortunately, in February 2022, the Museum’s galvanised iron roof had been replaced and this prevented much more extensive damage to the building.

The Daylesford Museum Reserve grant will be used to improve inadequate drainage on the north side of the Museum building, reconstruct the Band Room floor, and replace the mansard slate roof. The slate roof above the Band Room leaked profusely during the heavy rains, forcing Band members to place buckets strategically around the room to prevent further damage to the floor and their instruments.

All project works are informed by the Daylesford Museum Reserve’s Conservation Management Plan and must be completed by 30 June 2024.

Our political representatives were very relaxed and happy to have the opportunity to meet some of the hard-working volunteers involved with the Historical Society and the Band.

“This support will fund repairs to halls, recreation reserves and other important facilities, ensuring that community assets in our region are safe and can be best utilised,” said Member for Ballarat, Catherine King. “We’re pleased to partner with the Victorian Government to repair the damage of last year’s floods, and build better resilience into our community infrastructure.”

Member for Macedon, Mary-Anne Thomas added, “These flood recovery projects will help restore facilities that play an integral role across our community.”

Ms Shani Clark, President of the Band, commented that “Members of the Daylesford Community Brass Band are delighted that the DMRCoM has obtained funding to do much-needed repairs to the slate roof and Band Room floor. Completion of these works will remove the risks associated with water damage caused to the flooring, which since the rain event last year has become quite unstable in places. We congratulate the DMRCoM for their endeavours in securing funding, and thank the Federal and State governments for their support.”

DMRCoM Chair, Mr Gary Carter, said ‘This is an important heritage building and community asset. The 130-year-old Museum building is currently home to the Daylesford and District Historical Society and the Daylesford Community Brass Band. These are both very important community and cultural organisations that have called the Museum home for over 50 years and this funding will help restore and protect this important community building in the main street of Daylesford.’

DMRCoM is grateful to receive this much needed disaster recovery funding from the Australian and Victorian Governments and appreciates ongoing support and advice from staff at Victoria’s Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action.

Information on other projects supported by the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangement is available at deeca.vic.gov.au/grants/voluntary-committees-of-management-flood-recovery.


Museum Reserve users gather with Catherine King and Mary-Anne Thomas. (Photo: Kallista Kaval)

Dr Leanne Howard is a local resident and a member of the Daylesford Museum Reserve Committee of Management.