Daylesford museum volunteer awarded

Daylesford and District Historical Society volunteer Gary Lawrence was recognised for “outstanding contribution” at a Museums Australia awards night last week. 

He was awarded the Museums Australia (Victoria) Award for Excellence (Volunteer). 

Daylesford and District Historical Society volunteer Gary Lawrence accepts his Museums Australia award from Shrine of Remembrance exhibitions curator Neil Sharkey at the Australian Centre for Moving Images (ACMI) on Wednesday night. Picture: Simon Fox.

Daylesford and District Historical Society volunteer Gary Lawrence accepts his Museums Australia award from Shrine of Remembrance exhibitions curator Neil Sharkey at the Australian Centre for Moving Images (ACMI) on Wednesday night. Picture: Simon Fox.

Daylesford and District Historical Society volunteer Gary Lawrence accepts his Museums Australia award at the Victorian Museum Awards on Wednesday July 26. Picture: Simon Fox.

Daylesford and District Historical Society volunteer Gary Lawrence accepts his Museums Australia award at the Victorian Museum Awards on Wednesday July 26. Picture: Simon Fox.

Mr Lawrence has made successful grant applications and planned improvements to the building while progressing cataloguing of the collection throughout his five years volunteering with the Daylesford and District Historical Society, 

Mr Lawrence said all members of the historical society volunteered hundreds of hours to ensure the museum was viable, open on weekends and inviting to all. 

“A local museum like ours keeps safe community memories, stories and evidence of our journey to this point and provides a basis for resilience and development,” he said. 

“Our museum is like so many others - located in a fragile historic building that requires constant repair within a funding void. We recently had the building rewired, we have repaired windows, floors, walls and painted several areas. We strongly encourage state government to step up with the care of their local museum buildings and allow us to concentrate on the history.”

Museums Australia judges recognised Daylesford and District Historical Society’s establishment of links with LGBTIQ advocates and the Dja Dja Warrung Corporation. 

“Gary hasn’t been afraid to move into more challenging areas, including Indigenous histories and representation of LGBTIQ; something that is not always easy to do in regional communities.”

The museum relies on fundraising and grants to operate.