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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 5 Hansard (8 May) . . Page.. 1380 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

Mr Speaker, I am fairly confident that the Assembly will support this motion and that, in the future, as a community, we will honour those who have done well. I hope we do that as a community, with a sense of pride, and that we do it because they honour us with their achievements and their presence. We should honour them by saying that we, as a city, as a territory, are proud of them. I commend the motion to the house.

MS DUNDAS (9.00): I thank Mr Smyth for bringing the fabulous achievement of the Australian War Memorial to the attention of this Assembly. I add to this debate by reminding the Assembly of the outstanding work of not only the paid staff at the War Memorial, but also of the volunteer staff. Both paid and unpaid staff should be included when we talk about staff on this motion.

The volunteers at the War Memorial do an amazing job as tour guides. They help out in a number of different ways and play a significant role in the make-up of the War Memorial and in the achievement of winning back-to-back tourism awards. If we acknowledge the staff of the War Memorial for the great work they have done, we must remember to acknowledge the unpaid staff as well.

MR QUINLAN (Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Business and Tourism, Minister for Sport, Racing and Gaming and Minister for Police, Emergency Services and Corrections) (9.02): We are quite happy to accept this motion, as amended. The War Memorial has won the award for best major tourist attraction in Australian tourism awards, in a couple of years. It has, in fact, won other awards. In 1998, in the Australian internet awards, it had the best government website. In 1999, it won a silver award in service charter awards for excellence. In 1997, Professor Peter Edwards, the War Memorial's former official historian, was awarded the Colin Roderick Award for the best Australian book of 1997-A Nation at War.

Visitor numbers have increased, so the War Memorial is an attraction that is assisting Canberra in its tourism thrust. It has been increasing ever since 1994-95, when the record was broken during the 50th anniversary of the Second World War. Apart from that special year, there has been steady growth in attendance at the War Memorial.

The War Memorial is one of our four major tourist attractions. As I said earlier in the day, in this place, we are building relationships with those four major attractions. We are working towards promoting visitation to Canberra, and to all attractions at all levels-so they will be bouncing off each other. We want to provide attractive packages that will offer a complete and rewarding visit to tourists who visit this town.

However, while we congratulate the Australian War Memorial on winning the big one-the gold medal-we must not overlook the CIT, our own tech. The CIT won the industry education award, for the third time. There are numerous local ACT award winners who contribute greatly to our local tourism industry. The Australian War Memorial and the CIT have received congratulations from both government and CTEC, but the recognition has not been public. It is possibly time that we did recognise them publicly.

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