Updated with ORRA member Brian Davies’ speech to the June 25 Council-under-administration meeting.
Mr Administrator, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am speaking on behalf of Ourimbah Region Residents Association known as ORRA. I’ve been known to speak at these forums opposing motions, but I’m pleased to say that tonight, I’m here to give ORRA’s wholehearted support to this motion. We have the backing of large numbers of residents who signed two petitions asking for such a result. It provides continuity in a long history of community involvement and public resources in the village centre and fulfils one of the aims of the Ourimbah Masterplan.
The Ourimbah School of Arts Hall (aka Nissen hut aka Hangar) at 1a Jaques St was an integral part of community life in Ourimbah in a tradition that dates back to the start of the 20th century. Since it was built in 1950, this hall hosted dances, movies, wedding receptions, farewells, sports presentations, school events, amateur theatricals, live music, a boys club encouraging fitness, and more.
But it was the 3rd iteration as two previous School of Arts Halls had burnt down, one in 1922 and one in 1949. On both occasions the generosity of spirit in the Ourimbah
community shone through with generous donations of land, cash and materials from a number well known families. The timber for the latest hall came from trees donated by locals that were milled free of charge at Brownlee’s Mill, now the proposed site of the new food innovation hub. The new halls were built by volunteer labor.
In this motion ORRA sees a continuation of that generosity of spirit. Our president stated “we recognise that UON has been extremely generous to make this offer to our community and we thank them for being so supportive.”
And, of course, we’d like to thank Council for putting forward this motion recommending to purchase this site on behalf of the Ourimbah Community. ORRA and the people of Ourimbah look forward to consulting with Council on how best to utilise this site in future.
Mr Administrator, I, and ORRA, respectfully ask you to please approve this motion.