A clash with the Education Department in North Newtown

    In early 1973 there was a confrontation between Newtown residents and the Education Department over proposals to build a teachers’ college in the suburb. The North Newtown Action Group was formed in March to combat these plans on several grounds: firstly, there was valuable stock in the area as a residential one for low to middle-income earners; the increased traffic would only add to already congested streets; most prospective students lived in the outer suburbs; and Sutherland Council was actually very interested in the prospect of the facility being built in the new township of Menai. Newtown residents felt that the Department displayed ‘an arrogant disregard for the community its plans will disrupt,’ and in April 1974 a green ban was officially imposed. 

    References
    Verity and Meredith Burgmann, Green bans, red union: the saving of a city, 1998.

    Research provided by Isabella Maher


    About

    On the 50th anniversary of the Green Bans, the ideals of their struggle to protect heritage and environmental amenity for all to enjoy are more urgent than ever. In 2011 the Green Bans Art Walk and Exhibition (in two parts at The Cross Art Projects and The Firstdraft Depot Project Space), told the story of an inspired period, its charismatic leaders and grass-roots heroes. The project comprised a series of public guided walks between the exhibition venues functioned as a living instruction manual and moral compass charting stories of good and evil, creativity and conflict. Read more

    Now

    The Powerhouse Museum Alliance is a group of concerned citizens working to save the Powerhouse Museum in Ultimo. The Alliance includes longstanding benefactors of the museum, former trustees, design and heritage experts and senior museum professionals. Read more