Friday, 21 February 2020

The former Morwell Pigeon Club building on the site of the Maltese Community Centre in Morwell has been transformed into Australia’s first Maltese Museum thanks to support from the Andrews Labor Government.

Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing MP today officially opened the Museum in time for the 2020 Maltese Festa this weekend, after the Maltese Community Centre received a $56,270 grant through the Latrobe Valley Authority’s Community and Facility Fund.

The Museum features a collection of miniature handmade replicas of historical buildings dating back to the 1550s during the rule of the Knights of St John in Malta. It also includes a huge collection of Maltese Memorabilia, brought to Australia by migrants since the 1940s.

Extensive works at the building included replacing internal walls, electrical wiring and lighting, replacing front and side doors, removing the suspended ceiling to allow for tall exhibits and replacing guttering and downpipes.

Local contractors were used in the refurbishment project, with many volunteer hours also going towards the project from members of the local Maltese community.

The Festa has become an extremely popular event in the Latrobe Valley, with more than 10,000 people expected to attend this year, with many travelling from Melbourne and interstate.

The Maltese Festa will take place at Kernot Hall on Saturday 22 February, with the Maltese Museum open to the public from 12pm on Sunday 23 February.

More than 180 different community groups across the Latrobe Valley region are now seeing the benefits of improved facilities thanks to the Labor Government’s Community and Facility Fund, delivered as part of the Latrobe Valley Authority’s $266 million package.

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing MP

“We’re proud to support this wonderful project which will attract visitors to our region, including some from Melbourne’s Maltese community for this weekend’s Festa.” 

“The Maltese Museum is an important community space which will help preserve Maltese artefacts for future generations to enjoy and treasure.”

Quotes attributable to Latrobe Valley Authority CEO Karen Cain

“We are extremely pleased to support this project which has transformed the former Morwell Pigeon Club building into a high-quality Museum for our community to enjoy for years to come.”