Federal Member for Ballarat, Catherine King, today said she was delighted that upgrade works at Sovereign Hill’s Comfort Inn, funded through a grant from the Federal Labor Government, were about to start.
In March 2013, Ms King announced that Sovereign Hill was to receive $250,000 to help make it easier for people with special needs to visit the museum and stay in on-site accommodation as part of the government’s Tourism Industry Regional Development Fund (TIRF).
Sovereign Hill is one of 65 tourism projects across Australia being offered $13.1 million in funding under the first round of the TIRF program, and one of eight in Victoria.
The project at Comfort Inn Sovereign Hill is scheduled to commence on Monday 29 July 2013 and includes the renovation of 6 accommodation rooms, a new conference facility, and refurbished dining room.
Sovereign Hill CEO Jeremy Johnson said the project allows for the improvement of accommodation services and access for guests and visitors with disabilities and also for families.
“The upgrading of the Reception and Conference area will also service our existing and potential clients very well and we are delighted with the support of the Federal Government and Catherine King MHR in securing us this grant,” Mr Johnson said.
The grant will match Sovereign Hill’s contribution of $100,000 and a further $150,000 from our catering contractor, Delaware North Companies Australia.
Ms King said the funding was part of the Government’s determination to direct major investment funding into regional Australia across a range of industry sectors.
“The Government has allocated $48.5 million over four years to the TIRF Grants Program,” Ms King said.
“The grants offer unique opportunities for rural and regional tourism operators to improve the quality of their tourism products, and increase the numbers of visitors to their regions.
“Sovereign Hill, along with all other successful applicants, demonstrated a strong understanding of how its project will contribute to the goals of the Government’s Tourism 2020 strategy.
Ms King said online applications for Round 2 of the TIRF grants program close on Wednesday 7 August 2013.
For more details to assist applicants, including YouTube presentations, the program guidelines, information on successful applicants from Round 1, and a link to apply, applicants should visit www.ret.gov.au/tirfgrants