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History and Hi-Tech collide to light up Gladstone Gaol

Gladstone Gaol is getting an historic makeover

Gladstone’s heritage listed gaol has been closed since the middle of last year, but courtesy of the Australian Government’s Silver to Sea Way project, the padlocks will come off and the iconic building will become a canvas for a spectacular light and projection show. Historical images, videos, and animations will take visitors on a trip back through time, as the past comes alive in a way that’s as enlightening as it is entertaining.

Backed by soundscapes and music to set the mood, it’s not just a history lesson, it’s an experience that will make you feel like you’re right there in the midst of Gladstone Gaol’s intriguing stories. The historical storytelling aims to not only share the Gaol’s past, but allow visitors to dive into the site’s rich stories and significance.

Creative arts company Illuminart will take centre stage, using their expertise in illumination and storytelling to create an exciting display. This unique approach will lure history buffs, film enthusiasts, and travellers seeking a taste of something different.

The Silver to Sea Way project, spearheaded by the National Trust of South Australia, focuses on heritage revitalisation at four sites including Peterborough, Jamestown, Gladstone, and Port Pirie. These towns were once connected by one of the world’s busiest railway lines, playing a crucial role in transporting millions of tonnes of ore from Broken Hill to Port Pirie and contributing significantly to Australia’s economic success.

President of the Gladstone Tourism and Development Association, David Catford, highlighted the project as a spectacular attraction for the region. He added, “Gladstone Gaol Immersive Activation is not just a project; it’s a vision for a brighter and more vibrant Gladstone.”

The Northern Areas Council approved local signage for the Silver to Seaway project, with Mayor Sue Scarman noting the project’s potential to bring a fresh audience to the region. She said, “This project promises to make Gladstone Gaol a must-visit destination for history enthusiasts, families, and tourists, adding to the cultural enrichment of our region and providing an opportunity for the community to connect with their heritage.”

The project is expected to be completed mid way through 2024, with celebrations planned across Silver to Seaway sites.

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