Arts/Music/Film, Local

Voices in favour of the proposed Cultural and Civic Centre have their say – Part 2

I’m 69 and this is my first letter/article to any publication.

By Colin Phipps

I moved to Coffs Harbour for a quiet life, unfortunately my desired peace of mind has been disturbed by the incessant beatings of those both for and against the new cultural centre.

The original drawings done for City Hill in 2010 for a proposed Entertainment Centre, Art Gallery and Museum

It seems that, in line with other small time issues in small time towns there is no shortage of smoke and precious little clarity.

The various groups and their subgroups seem to break down as follows: Group 1: those who want a performing arts space to compliment the shiny new library/art gallery/council offices.

These folk for financial reasons generally want it located at City Hill. In the interest of fairness I took a drive out there and found a rather nice bridge club and the worthy Bunker Gallery. I also found a malarial wasteland. I beat a quick retreat to my car before they carried me off.

I can verify the truth of the Group1’s claims that City Hill is a mere 2k’s from Coffs Central and that the City Hill site is free, having been donated by a previous state Government. As the wipers flicked the mozzies off of my windscreen I was reminded of the old adage “you get what you pay for”.

Group 1 also seems to be a bit hazy on their plans to move patrons to the site. Whilst City Hill might be a mere 2 k’s from the CBD there is a distinct lack of cafes and resturants on the way not to mention a dearth of public transport.

Group 2: These poor souls are the sworn enemies of Group1 who accuse them of using public funds to finance an epic bender that would put a sailor on shore leave to shame. This flagrant flouting of the laws of economic rationalism seem to have done the impossible and raised the dead. Instead of being subjected to no more that the contented chewing of grass from his retirement paddock we are subjected to the spectre pointing his boney finger at those of us who wouldn’t mind a decent art gallery not to mention the more efficient workings of CHCC.

“Wouldn’t mind a decent art gallery not to mention the more efficient workings of CHCC.”

According to statistics more people visited galleries and libraries last year than the horse races so there must be something worthwhile in it.

If you don’t believe me go 80k’s up the highway to Grafton and it’s gem of a City Gallery. Libraries have likewise changed. Go take a look at CHCC Library and it’s new 3D printer. I didn’t hear any howls of complaint at it’s purchase.

Please don’t tell the old racehorse or his broadcasting mates that an outbreak of culture has arisen unbidden lest he has his politician mate threaten to cut its funding.

All these cohorts of mates and groups of mates makes for mass confusion which is why you should do you own research and not believe everything that you are told.

Trolls are most welcome. You’ll have the honour of being my first.

7 Comments

  1. Brigit Mackenzie

    Colin’s dark humour me thinks

  2. I’m not very tech savvy but I could only see one message on this site from Mr Phipps. Where are the rest.? Remember I did say I’m not tech savvy.

  3. Jeanette Smidt.

    The few times I have tried to leave a message on this site, when I get to the end,it tells me I have already made this comment and wont accept it.And I have never made a duplicate entry. So whats going on.

  4. 40cmPedestalFan

    Sixteen kilometres up Launbrooks Road, turn left at the fallen-down sign, then about another five minutes in that southeasterly direction, you’ll find a mosquito patch. Unbelievable. As you drive there, lovely sunny day, amongst the eucalpyts with a jaunty view back over the valley, you’d never expect what you see. It’s almost like a veil. Definitely should be signposted “Enter at your own risk”. Certainly shouldn’t build a cultural centre there. The mosquitoes fill an area of approximately two hundred metres by ninety metres, you can see them just in that spot, sort of all dark and noisy up close; thankfully you can’t drive through them or you’d get them hitting your windscreen. You wouldn’t want to walk through that mosquito patch, I can tell you! I’ve heard there’s another mosquito patch, this one about a hundred metres by sixteen metres, west along Paterson’s Way near Winterson in South Australia, another patch with corners almost entirely squared, just in that spot. They do that, mosquitoes.

  5. Julia Johnston

    Confusion doesn’t begin to cover it Colin Phipps ! I love your letter and am completely flummoxed at this whole debacle; I’ve attended ‘seminars’ and all sorts of meetings (over 30 years) with experts flown in by CHCC to put forward the pros and cons of Art Gallery etc etc…… to the point I don’t bloody care now. I am shocked at the vitriol of some tiny minded luddites with no thought for the growth and future of Coffs Harbour. Culture and positivity is what we need.

    • You have obviously found more in Colin’s letter than I was able to, Julia. I got the confusion, and perhaps some sarcasm, but precious little else. There’s certainly nothing there which might progress informed debate.
      I’m not sure who you would consider to be a tiny minded luddite. Perhaps you see opposition to Knight’s plan, and her unethical behaviour, as negativity and opposition to increased cultural exposure, but nothing could be further from the truth.
      I believe that most of those who oppose the construction of Knight’s Palace, actually favour the creation of improved cultural spaces.

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