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Lease ensures bright future for Entally House


A bright future for one of Tasmania's most historic properties, Entally House, has been assured following the signing of a lease between the State Government and Gunns Ltd.

The Minister for Parks and Heritage, Judy Jackson, said the lease agreement provided a model for commercial sponsorship to help preserve historic buildings.

"This long-term solution will protect the heritage values of the site, while minimising the burden of maintenance on the Tasmanian community," Ms Jackson said.

"It ensures that the Entally House historic site is managed as a viable historic attraction for the people of Tasmania.

"The lease will allow the development and operation of a restaurant, wine cellar and retail outlet and for Gunns to establish a vineyard within the historic site, together with providing and conducting tours within Entally House.

"These arrangements ensure that public access to the site will be maintained for a minimum of 360 days a year and that the significant involvement of volunteers will continue.

"In particular, it ensures that the relationship with the National Trust and the Entally House volunteers has a solid foundation to continue to provide services.

"As part of the agreement, Gunns Ltd intends to invest a significant amount in heritage works at the site over the next five years.

"It also requires that all works at the site will be in compliance with heritage guidelines as defined by Heritage Tasmania and in the Entally House Historic Site Strategic Asset Management Plan."

Gunns Ltd was selected following an expression of interest process late last year. It will take over management of the site on 1 July 2005.

Mrs Jackson said the Department of Tourism, Parks, Heritage and the Arts, utilising ongoing specialist advice from the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery, will maintain its involvement in the management of the extensive moveable heritage collection at Entally House.

Entally House is 18 kilometres from Launceston at Hadspen. The house was built in 1819. The 37 hectare estate features superb grounds and gardens that include a green house, chapel, coach house and stables.

This initiative is part of the State Government's commitment to progressing Tasmania Together Goal 21 - Value, protect and conserve our natural and cultural heritage.