How The Centre Started
The Hut Group met each Monday morning in a disused Army Hut in the middle of the Golf Course. The Hut was constructed with asbestos walls, asbestos roof, and lined through-out with asbestos. It was small but exclusively for the use of the Hut Group. It had power and water and was therefore a great facility for the group. It had a mishmash of old discarded furniture and floor coverings, but had ample shelving and sink unit. Each member had a key to go there at any time they wished, but members had to be an associate member of the Golf Club, for insurance reasons. The “Hut Group’ were the artists of Hawks Nest.
The hut group held an exhibition in the Community Hall each year during the greatest influx of holiday makers over the Christmas period. We were all encouraged to put in paintings and crafts. This is now continued each January with our three day Art and Craft Sale.
We answered questions continually about who we were and why we had started the shop, so I made up a sign stating our purpose and fastened it to the shop door:
“Our aim is to build a centre to further the interest in art and craft in our area… a meeting place to encourage and exchange ideas… a place to grow and learn new skills… a sales outlet for our local art and craft…”
The Myall Community Art and Craft Centre had achieved their greatness and a wonderful reputation when they finally succeeded in getting their first loan and paying it off so quickly. They were now widely known within Governments and Council and their records could easily be found when applying for future grants.
And that is just what they did…applied for another grant, this time with much bigger plans which included the present-day shop area and Room 2. Of course they got that grant also. They paid that off in record time also. And so the story goes on… more grants and successful repayments of loans. The building now is so big, catering for many types of arts and crafts. Re-arrangement of space was then necessary to make sure that each art or craft is sufficiently catered for and not exclusively for any one type of art or craft.
An excerpt from “How the Centre got started” by Vera Bright, Founding President.
As the membership expanded so did the need for more work space. Once again grants were applied for and fundraising began to increase the size of the building. Increasing interest from the men in the Community meant it became necessary to enlarge the woodworking machinery area and provide a fourth work room.
The extension was opened by the State Members for Myall Lakes the Hon John Turner MP on Saturday 3rd April 2004.