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History of the Musgrave Park Cultural Centre


The concept of the Musgrave Park Cultural Cetnre owes its origins to many people in the community, some of whom are no longer with us. The idea of an Aboriginal Cultural Centre in Musgrave Park has been talked up in formal and informal gatherings throughout Brisbane, and in the Park itself; by a wide rande of community people, over many years. Some people even remember such discussions in the 1960’s. The community’s longstanding support, dedication and contribution in creating and strengthenin the dream is what brought us to this point.

Any attempt to list the people who have contributed to the process is certain to miss many people who have been part of the strugle. However we acknowledge the important role played by Pat Murdoch, former Administrator for Musgrave Park Aboriginal Corporation and Selwyn Johnson (snr) former Chairperson of the Musgrave Park Cultural Centre Inc.

First formal proposal for a Cultural Centre in Musgrave Park was developed by the Brisbane Community and transcribed by Pat Murdoch of the Musgrave Park Aboriginal Corporation. Over the next 10 years various state and local government members made statements in support of the proposal but failed to assist in the implementation of the project.

Other links: http://www.greenleft.org.au/1995/212/10770



Brisbane City Council report on the Park recommended in favour of an Aboriginal Cultural Centre.


MPCC Inc continued to conduct community consultations on the functions of the Cultural Centre, with members of the communities, of all age groups and backgrounds.

Brisbane City Council commissions further community consultation as part of a conservation study into future use of Musgrave Park. Released in 1996, this study supported the Cultural Centre in the Park.
Later that year, Council unanimously approved the granting of a lease over a site for the Cultural Centre. However, the State government refused to endorse this decision.

Musgrave Park Cultural Centre Steering Committee was established as a sub-committee of MPAC. Murri Murra Aboriginal Corporation provided office space and use of a phone.

Musgrave Park Cultural Centre Inc was incorporated on 14th day of October. Jean Bell was the inaugural President.

The National DARE (Community Cultural Development) Conference provided a forum for exploring the problems faced by the proposal and generated support for the Centre in government and other community sectors. One month later the then Minister for Natural Resources approved the excision of land in the park for a Cultural Centre.

Agreement reached for a single excision of the entire south-eastern section of the park, from the tennis courts back, including the Jagera Centre designated for “Aboriginal cultural purposes”. This area to be held in trust by the Brisbane City Council, and an area within it to be leased to Musgrave Park Cultural Centre Inc. as the site for the Cultural Centre.

Brisbane City Council surveyed the site and the Department of Natural Resources amended the Title documents.

A 30 year lease (the head lease) was signed between Brisbane City Council and Arts Queensland. A sub-lease for the same 30 year period will shortly be signed between Musgrave Park Cultural Centre and Arts Queensland. Architects Innovarchi and Kirk were contracted by Arts Queensland to undertake design of the new Centre. Local Aboriginal architect Carroll Go-Sam was retained to provide support for the management of MPCCI.


The sub-lease for a 30 year period was signed between Musgrave Park Cultural Centre and Arts Queensland; with the commitment to develop the new Centre by 2004.


The Architects, Innovarchi and Kirk, became the Project Manager who proceeded with the Development Application and Tender Process.


MPCCI Business Plan was again revised by KPMG and Arts Queensland, to reflect the progression to the development and construction of the new Centre. MPCCI Management worked to revised this draft business plan. At this point construction costs were again escalating at an alarming rate which created a shortfall in funds to meet the costs of the MPCC project.


MPCCI continue to secure other project funds for the construction of the new Centre; and focus on various activities of business developments.


MPCCI have secured other project partners and look forward to exciting times ahead as we progress to the construction of the new Musgrave Park Cultural Centre in the near future.

BECOME A MEMBER of the Musgrave Park Cultural Centre today . . .

download a Membership Application off the website or contact the office at admin@musgravepark.org.au

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