Shear Outback was officially opened on Australia Day, Saturday 26th January, 2002.

The official opening was carried out by Kay Hull, the Federal Member for Riverina.

There were an estimated 3,000 people in attendance for the opening ceremony.

An easy-to-read transcript of this article appears below the picture.


The above page has been reproduced with permission from The Riverine Grazier, Hay, N.S.W.

Where did the money go?


When former Deputy Prime Minister, Tim Fischer announced a $4.66 million Federation funding of the Australian Shearers’ Hall of fame, the committee was swamped with the question “what will you be doing with all that money?”. The answer was “it’s only half of what we need”.

The question now being asked “Where did it go?”.

Most of it went into the Murray Downs woolshed and the purpose-built building. A total of $2.355 million was spent on the architectural design and building of the museum and the purchase, dismantling and reconstruction of the woolshed.

Design, procurement and research of the exhibitions cost $1.020 million and landscaping which includes the gardens, paths, arena and design came to $175,000.

A total of $650,000 was spent on external infrastructure such as the car parks, roads, pathways, security fencing, land surveys, formation and drainage.

A further $360,000 went into management fees including project management, construction management and project director.

Money raised through raffles, the Op shop, bookstall and other fundraising activities assist with promotions, while sponsorships and subscription will go towards the operating costs of the complex.

Forming partnerships

Shear Outback has been fortunate to attract the support and commitment from a number of partners and other organisations.

The Commonwealth government was the first to provide a substantial contribution through the Federation Fund. The 4.6 million grant allowed the project to proceed.

Other sponsorships have been received from Tourism New South Wales, Festivals Australia, Riverina Naturally and Hay Shire council which has provided ongoing support right from the start.

Late last year a partnership was formed between Shear Outback and Australian Wool Innovations (AWI) Pty Ltd.

The sponsorship is for a three-year period and in return Shear Outback will provide a facility for AWI to communicate the outcomes of its research and development investments to wool producers and wool consumers, run specialised training programs for the wool and shearing industries and develop shearer and shedhand training programs in the Murray Downs shed.

The Hall of Fame area under construction. Pictured inspecting it are ASHF Board director Bill Booth and Neil Evans from the Department of Public Works. More than $2.3 million was spent on constructing the museum building and the Murray Downs woolshed.



The museum under construction.



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Extracts reproduced with permission from The Riverine Grazier