The CFMEU has entered into an agreement with the Government of New South Wales on the preservation of the heritage of Willow Grove and St Georges Terrace.
The union is aware that government contractors have started dismantling the non-heritage aspects of the building.
St George’s Terrace and Willow Grove were originally intended for complete demolition.
The success of the Green Ban, in alliance with the Residents of North Parramatta Action Group, forced the NSW government to the table, resulting in the integration of St George’s Terrace into the design of the new building. Prior to the imposition of the green ban, the NSW government was determined to execute its destruction plan. It has been reversed.
Willow Grove has been saved from being lost forever, with an agreement now made to allow the villa to be moved to another suitable location in Parramatta. The Union, like the Community, had preferred that the villa remain where it is now.
The terms on which this agreement was reached include the creation of a committee to oversee the dismantling, relocation, reconstruction and reuse of the villa and ongoing maintenance. The villa will be kept in state hands, funded and used for the community of Parramatta.
CFMEU NSW will ensure that the decommissioning process is undertaken in accordance with best heritage conservation practices, and that it should be reconstructed at a location to be chosen with the local Parramatta community and stakeholders as soon as possible.
The CFMEU will continue to support the community in its ongoing work to preserve Parramatta’s heritage.
Secretary of State Darren Greenfield, “In unprecedented times, the imposition of the green ban saved these two important buildings. When we announced the ban both were to be completely destroyed, this result this week means that both buildings are saved for the community of Parramatta and form an important part of the heritage forever; but more importantly, they are symbols of worker and community power who come together for the good of the community.
The union will continue to hold the government to account for its commitment to preserve the Willow Grove building and rebuild it in a new location that will benefit residents of West Sydney and New South Wales.
This campaign to save Willow Grove and St George’s Terrace will remain an important part of Parramatta’s heritage and history for generations to come.
/ Public distribution. This material is from the original organization and may be ad hoc in nature, edited for clarity, style and length.