Kelly collection still drawing people in
REGARDED as one of the best places to learn about Australia’s most famous outlaw, the Ned Kelly Vault in Beechworth’s Historic Precinct last week welcomed visitor number 80,000.
The museum opened in 2014, and is a unique partnership between Indigo Shire Council, the Burke Museum and a community of supporters.
It is staffed by volunteers from the Beechworth area, with curatorial expertise provided by the Burke Museum.
The Vault houses regional Victoria’s most extensive collection of Ned Kelly artefacts and memorabilia, drawn from public and private collections across Australia.
Key objects on display are Ned’s death mask, Dan Kelly’s pistol, Ned’s favourite rifle ‘Betty’, the original table from the Ann Jones’ Inn at Glenrowan that shows the scars and bullet holes from the infamous siege, as well as pop culture items including ‘Shot’ - Sir Sidney Nolan’s final Kelly painting.
Burke Museum manager Cameron Auty said the success of the Ned Kelly Vault is a clear indication of the interest in the Kelly story from both Australian and international visitors.
“Ned, his gang and the police and people of North East Victoria are central figures in Australian folklore,” he said.
“Their tale showcases themes of crime, justice and injustice, immigration, the gold rush, the creation of creation of modern Australian identity.
“The Ned Kelly Vault is a great place to dive deep into these stories and more.”
With the Ned Kelly Alive report due to be released soon Mr Auty said it was an exciting time at the vault.
“The report, by Tourism North East and Regional Development Victoria, in conjunction with local government authorities from the region, will showcase immersive and engaging cultural tourism experiences across Victoria’s High Country based on the Ned Kelly story.
“This is a great time for cultural heritage around the Kelly story.
“We are telling the story in deeper and richer ways than ever before, and this visitation milestone to the Ned Kelly Vault shows that people continue to be fascinated with the Kelly’s and their impact on Australian history.
“We’re excited about big things to come for the Vault and for Ned Kelly in Beechworth.”
OUTLAW INTEREST: The Ned Kelly Vault in Beechworth’s Historic Precinct which opened in 2014 continues to be a popular drawcard for visitors to the town.