Community works to save 112-year-old Wingham station master’s cottage | Manning River Time

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Plans are underway to save the historic Wingham Station Master’s Cottage from slow destruction by vandals and time, and return it to the community for new life. “As a ‘heritage town’, Wingham has few historic buildings left. We can’t afford to lose anything more, but that’s just one of the reasons why we have to fight to save the 112-year-old Station Master’s Cottage from collapsing into the earth,” says Manning Valley Historical Society member and Wingham resident Bill Beach, who is on a mission to restore the old cottage. 112 years old and to use it as a community centre. Over the past two years Bill has worked towards this and gained community support from Wingham Rotary, Probus, Wingham Chamber of Commerce, Wingham Advancement Group and Manning Valley Historical Society, all represented on a committee formed to secure the cottage A community meeting will be held on Sunday 20th February so the community can hear plans in store for the cottage and show Community Housing and the Australian Rai l Track Corporation (ARTC) the level of interest in the cottage. “I think we’re at the stage where we need more community involvement,” says Bill. “We want to spread the word as much as possible to demonstrate that this is something important to the community, that the community is on board and owns the project, and that they are ready to work with the committee. as much as possible .” Bill says Community Housing and ARTC understand the community’s interest in the cottage, and both seem sympathetic to what the committee is trying to achieve. “ARTC is aware of the community’s interest in obtaining either title to the chalet or a long-term lease of the chalet. Verbally Community Housing has also advised that they have no need for the chalet, that she just wanted to get rid of it, and they also understand the community’s purpose with the cottage.” The cottage sat empty and unused for a long time. Bill says Community Housing told him they own the cottage, but ARTC says he owns the cottage and Community Housing rents it. According to Bill, Community Housing and ARTC are currently negotiating what will happen to the cottage. And that takes a long time. “With each passing day, this chalet deteriorates more, but we are at this impasse,” says Bill. As he watched the cottage grow more dilapidated from vandals and neglect, Bill asked Community Housing to close it in an attempt to prevent further vandalism. Bill admits it would take a lot of work to restore the cabin; he says an initial valuation suggests it would cost around $200,000, factoring in heritage issues. “But it’s definitely salvageable,” he says. Once restored, Bill hopes the cabin will become a tourist attraction, serving as the site for a railroad exhibit by the Manning Valley Historical Society. He says that after discussions with other community groups, the other rooms in the cottage could be used by them – as a shop for the Wingham Spinners and Craft Group, a Rotary bookstore and possibly a small cafe, says- he. All interested community members are invited to the meeting on Sunday, February 20 in the auditorium of the Wingham Memorial Ex-Services Club, beginning at 4 p.m. To keep up to date with what’s going on with the cottage, visit and like the Support the Station Masters Cottage Wingham NSW Facebook page. Our reporters work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how you can access our trusted content: Did you know? Manning River Times online subscribers not only have 24/7 access to local and national news, sports, current affairs and entertainment, but they also have access to our print editions in digital format. , with all the advertisements and classifieds at your fingertips.



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