Replica historic miners’ village plan gets broader

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Alexandra’s proposed replica historic miners’ village and riverside park at the river end of Tarbert St could be a step closer to opening.

The Alexandra Miners Trust is asking for the wider community to add their thoughts through an online survey, which will contribute to a business case.

The online survey includes concept plans for a village and moorings.

Trust chairman Rory McLellan said focus group meetings held last week provided insights including a desire to “have the entire community to use it, from children through to the elderly”.

The aim of the site was “all about heritage”, but as it had evolved there had been some discussion to expand the definition of heritage beyond simply gold-mining.

Some of the messages from the focus groups wanted to “keep the scope wide”, Mr McLellan said.

“Maybe just don’t focus on it being a miners’ village, just have it as a heritage village and then look at everything post-mining as well.”

Trust co-ordinator Lynda Gray said there could be elements of discovery in the site, so “it evolves over time. That’s what happens nowadays, that’s what people to a certain extent expect”.

“Whatever we do here has to integrate with other heritage offers and facilities that are in the wider Central Otago region, so we are not just duplicating what is already here, but are working in and enhancing other things that are in our wider Central Otago region.”

The venture was not-for-profit, and costing the site would be part of the feasibility study, Mr McClellan said.

They anticipated a staged development to fit the funding.

“The idea is to have it as multi-use as possible, so something for the community to make the most of,” he said.

The business case project was jointly funded by a $25,000 grant from the Vincent Community Board and private donors.

The online survey is at www.surveymonkey.com/r/miners-village