Burdekin Cultural Venues History
From the perception of the history of cultural and entertainment activities in the Burdekin Shire it was obvious for some years that the need for a Cultural Complex was established.
The major stumbling block for building the Cultural Complex was funding but in 1975 the State Government announced a 33-1 / 3% subsidy to Local Authorities to assist in building Cultural Complexes. The then Ayr Shire Council called a public meeting to discuss a Community Cultural Centre and the result two monts later was the formation of the Burdekin Cultural Association and over the next seven years produced the Burdekin Cultural Complex.
A comprehensive plan detailing the proposals of of a Theatre and Public Library in Ayr and the upgrading of the Memorial Hall prepared by the Burdekin Cultural Executive placed before Council and then publicly circulated at the end of 1978.
In March 1980, local architects, Barrett & Associates, were comissioned to prepare plans and later that year the Ayr Shire Council agreed to proceed, provided the Executive raised $600,00 through public donations. Professional fund-raisers were called upon and by the end of May 1981, $850,000 had been raised and pledged.
One of the first fundraising effors had been by the Ayr (now Burdekin) Water Festival Committee which saw them donate $20,000.
The works first saw alterations made to the Memorial Hall undertaken by George Populin with the offical opening of the hall on September 6 1982.
Work proceeded on the Theatre,the successful tender being A.H. Hodge Constructions and the Burdekin Theatre officially opened on November 25 1982 at a cost of $2.2 million.