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‘More focus’ call for built heritage

TASMANIA’S built heritage is underfunded and its value to the tourism industry is not promoted enough, a report has found.

A Legislative Council inquiry which has been examining the state’s built heritage released its final report on Monday.

The report urges the government to help facilitate a whole-of-state focus on regional built-heritage tourism programs.

It found a lack of coordination existed and needed to be addressed, with more information exchanged and a government-facilitated annual forum.

Inquiry chairman and Hobart independent MLC Rob Valentine said heritage needed to be better recognised in government policies and planning.

“Built-heritage tourism is increasingly making a significant contribution to the economy and I think that needs to be recognised,” Mr Valentine said.

“We found that it’s managed disjointly across the state. There needs to be greater cohesion,” he said.

Mr Valentine said funding Tasmania’s heritage was a significant issue, and was a barrier for preservation and maintenance.

“There certainly needs to be a greater degree of funding provided across the sector in marketing and promotion,” he said.

The committee recommended new ways of raising funding be considered by the government, such as a lottery, or through tourism levies.

The report called on the government to evaluate Tasmania’s built-heritage assets, including industrial heritage, to determine their value for tourism purposes and their level of vulnerability.

It also found that volunteers were crucial to the survival of built heritage and their contribution should be better recognised.

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