23 May, 2014

Reconciliation Plaza Officially Opens

Reconciliation Plaza, the roadway between the northern and southern ends of Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga, will be officially opened at a ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday 26 May at10 am.

Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga, is traditionally acknowledged as the central camp and meeting place of the Kaurna people and holds high cultural, spiritual and physical significance to the traditional owners and custodians of the Adelaide Plains, and as a popular meeting place for many people since European settlement.

Reconciliation Committee dual-chairs Lord Mayor Stephen Yarwood and Elder Yvonne Agius, along with John Browne, chair of the Journey for Healing will officially open the plaza, which will include an interpretive sign explaining the significance of the space as a meeting place both now and in the past.

“Council has a long standing commitment to Reconciliation and this marks a significant step on that journey. I am proud to represent Council on the Reconciliation Committee, and in the official opening of the Plaza, where we have all worked together for a great outcome,” said Stephen.

Councillor David Plumridge suggested renaming the roadway to Reconciliation Plaza as a motion without notice during a Council meeting because he recognised the significance of the place.

“It’s still a significant and important place – it’s the venue of National Sorry Day celebrations as well as many other political and community-based Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island events including National Sorry Day, the Spirit Festival and the starting point for the annual NAIDOC march,” said David.

Respected Elder, Yvonne Agius said City of Adelaide has raised the profile of reconciliation throughout the City.

“I’ve been working with the Council for some time, and I’ve been so amazed at how they support the Kaurna people – not just with National Reconciliation Week, but everything they do to recognise the Adelaide plains people through the City,” she said.

Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga, in 1971 was the first place in Australia to fly the Aboriginal flag, which has flown permanently alongside the Australian flag in the centre of the Square since 1992.

The first National Sorry Day was held in 1998 and an open invitation is extended to everyone to join the annual free community event in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga.

Since 2010, City of Adelaide Reconciliation Committee has supported reconciliation activities to the value of more than $1.4 million.

To find out more about Reconciliation Plaza and National Sorry Day activities in Victoria Square go to http://www.cityofadelaide.com.au/whats-on

For more information

Rebecca Draysey