City of Bunbury celebrates the South West Migrant Memorial's official unveiling

Achievement: City of Bunbury and South West Migrant Memorial representatives gathered for the installation's official unveiling. Photo: Thomas Munday.
Achievement: City of Bunbury and South West Migrant Memorial representatives gathered for the installation's official unveiling. Photo: Thomas Munday.

Families from across Bunbury have celebrated the official launch of the South West Migrant Memorial. 

Bunbury representatives and community members attended the announcement at Leschenault’s Anergy headquarters on Wednesday, November 22. 

At the ceremony, members of the South West Migrant Memorial Committee inc. unveiled the memorial’s design.

The group revealed the memorial would be installed at Bunbury’s Queens Gardens in April 2018. 

The memorial has been in development for the past eight years.

The committee – comprised of descendants of early migrants – came up with the idea to honour the migrants who came from Europe to the South West between the early to mid 20th Century and 1968. 

The memorial includes a tree-like design with a trunk, branches and stainless steel leaves.

The leaves will feature plaques with the names of, and stories about, key individuals and families. 

The group planned for 500 plaques to be fixed onto the tree, with 300 having already been sold. 

In his speech, SW migrant memorial committee member and project manager Charlie Martella said the memorial honoured each family’s contributions to the region. 

Committee chairman Lui Tuia said each migrant helped to grow and enrich the region. 

During the event, the committee also thanked City of Bunbury Mayor Gary Brennan for his assistance. 

Mr Brennan said the memorial represented the community’s rich history and diversity. 

“We’ve got a wonderful community that really gets things done and, from a city council point of view, our role is to facilitate and get out of the way,” he said. 

“We have a wonderful memorial to early migrants in the SW and to the organising committee’s credit they done a huge amount of work.” 

Inmates at Bunbury Regional Prison worked on piecing together parts of the memorial. 

BRP superintendent Kerri Bishop said the prison aimed to support community programs and projects. 

Anyone interested in reserving a plaque for the memorial can contact Mr Tuia on 0428318434 or can find the submission form at http://southwestmigrantmemorial.org/

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