AN early proposal to paint Cabonne’s streetscapes in heritage colours will be discussed at Cabonne Council’s meeting on Tuesday.
The idea was raised at the Future Direction Forum in 2012 and in a report to councillors, heritage advisor David Scobie said the council would need to develop a fund to cover each of Cabonne’s villages if the idea proceeded.
“The planning and heritage staff at council are well aware of the high value which tourists and visitors place upon the character and integrity of these villages,” the report said.
“Local and public enthusiasm often builds after a number of schemes are completed and property owners, who may have been reluctant, come on board in order not to be left out and to ensure some level of commercial equity within the streetscape.”
Molong Historical Society president Marie Hammond said Cabonne’s heritage buildings were already in good shape, but she supported the idea.
“Some people don’t have the funds to paint their own buildings and I think that would look pretty spectacular,” she said.
“When people drive to Molong, they love it because it’s the first real country town they come to on the Mitchell Highway after the mountains. There’s very little variation to how it was when I was a child.”
Mrs Hammond anticipated the historical society would want to take advantage of any future repainting scheme for the Molong Museum. The 1860s former pub received federal grant funding in recent years.
“But we’ve never had enough money to paint it,” she said.
At the moment, Mr Scobie provides voluntary advice for those who own heritage buildings and grants of up to $14,000 are available to reinstate missing historic elements, remove elements detracting from the historical value, add awnings and undertake repairs on a dollar-for-dollar basis.
However, landowners are not required to restore their properties.
Cabonne’s Strategic Heritage Plan 2014-17 was approved on June 24, including a target to address 10 listings a year from the Cabonne Community Heritage Inventory.