In­spired de­sign hon­ours min­ers

Memo­rial site to be last­ing legacy to 50 men who paid the ul­ti­mate price

The Observer - - NEWS - LOUISE SHAN­NON

EN­VIS­AGED and cre­ated as a place to bring peo­ple to­gether in re­mem­brance of the past and in hon­our of a town’s men, and de­signed as a site for trav­ellers to visit, the Moura Min­ers’ Memo­rial struc­ture re­sem­bles min­ing tun­nels and min­ers’ hats.

Lo­cals and tourists will be able to take a walk through the tun­nels, read the sto­ries of the 50 men who died in min­ing dis­as­ters and in­di­vid­ual ac­ci­dents in the area, and pay trib­ute to the lives and fam­i­lies of those men who never re­turned home from work.

Sec­re­tary of the Moura Com­mu­nity Progress Inc, Mina McGuire, said the group of 10 had formed in No­vem­ber, 2010, in a bid to en­cour­age more mine work­ers and their fam­i­lies to move to town through the Move to Moura Cam­paign.

“Then we did our brochure and web­site, and in 2012 and 2013 we got an out­door gym in­stalled at the re­cre­ation grounds with money from An­glo Amer­i­can.”

She said that from 2013 the group, with an ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee of four, fo­cused on de­sign­ing the memo­rial to hon­our the min­ers and at­tract peo­ple to Moura who were trav­el­ling in the re­mote re­gion.

“And that also helps the lo­cal busi­nesses, so it had to be some­thing unique that would make peo­ple come and stop.

“It has been full-on and a lot of peo­ple have done a lot of work. We’ve also had to project man­age it our­selves be­cause we couldn’t af­ford a project man­ager.

“We’ve been lucky – it’s been a very good com­mit­tee.”

Next, she said the group would be look­ing ahead to a new mu­seum.

“The lit­tle old build­ing the mu­seum is in is get­ting very di­lap­i­dated, so we’d love to have a new mu­seum and cul­tural cen­tre … so that will be the next thing.”

The memo­rial hon­ours the 50 men who lost their lives in dis­as­ters on Septem­ber 20, 1975 at the Kianga No.1 ex­plo­sion – 13 lives lost; June 16, 1986, in the Moura No. 4 ex­plo­sion – 12 lives lost; Au­gust 7, 1994, in the Moura No. 2 mine ex­plo­sion –11 lives lost; and in mem­ory of the 14 min­ers who have died in sep­a­rate sin­gle ac­ci­dents since 1961.

Af­ter the 1994 dis­as­ter all un­der­ground min­ing op­er­a­tions ceased at the Moura Coal Fields.

Moura Mine, known as Daw­son Mine since 2006, has been op­er­at­ing just short of 60 years and pro­duc­tion at the mine is around 8 to 9 mil­lion tonnes per year and is a ma­jor con­trib­u­tor to the Aus­tralian econ­omy.

■ The Moura Min­ers’ Memo­rial open­ing cer­e­mony will be held from 9am to­day with guest speak­ers, cut­ting of the rib­bon, and a morn­ing tea at the RSL from 10.30am.

Photo: con­tributed

IN­SPIRED DE­SIGN: A miner’s hel­met pro­vided in­spi­ra­tion for the dome struc­ture that is the cen­tre­point of the Moura Min­ers’ Memo­rial.

The fin­ished tun­nel at the memo­rial.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.