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Heritage Council to visit Flynn

Th ACT Heritage Council will be paying Flynn and Giralang primary schools a visit as part of their assessment of the heritage value of the two schools, revealed an ACT public servant an Assembly Committee hearing today.

Scheduled for 18 February, the visit will “make an on-site inspection, have a look at the facts that have been presented to them and they will make a decision.”

A transcript of the evidence is below. You can find the original at ACT assembly website (see page 96).


MR COE: Where are we at with regard to the Flynn primary school site in terms of their heritage application?

Mr Zatschler: I can give an update on that. The Heritage Council commissioned the Institute of Architects to do a comparative assessment between all of the Taglietti schools. There are four of them. Two of them have been nominated—Giralang primary school and Flynn primary school. That has been received. It is in the process of being reviewed by the Heritage Council. One site inspection has been organised for 18 February, where members of the register task force will meet on site at Giralang and Flynn.

MR COE: What date was that?

Mr Zatschler: 18 February. They are looking at the two schools. The report has come back and said that two of the four schools have got certain heritage values. It is the degree to which they have. So the council will go out, make an on-site inspection, have a look at the facts that have been presented to them and they will make a decision. At the moment it is highly likely that Giralang primary school will meet the threshold. With Flynn, I am not sure. It is a decision that the council will make. We are hoping that a recommendation will go to the council meeting scheduled for the beginning of March.

MR COE: Why do you say Giralang will and not Flynn?

THE CHAIR: I did not hear him say it would not.

Mr Zatschler: I am saying there is a strong likelihood that Giralang will be nominated. If you have a look at the Taglietti submissions in the report, from his perspective that is the school that he holds dearest to his heart, and it is where his gold medal award dinner was held. He had the choice of others. So out of the four that he designed and that were constructed, he himself puts that at the highest value.

MR COE: In terms of the process, you obviously have a fair idea about the applications to be able to say that Giralang will have a stronger chance than Flynn. Is it your responsibility to advise the council or is it simply to provide information and leave the council to make the decision?

Mr Zatschler: We provide support and advice, but at the end of the day it is the expertise of the council that makes the decision. That is why they have been appointed as an independent council, to review all of the information, to go on site, to talk to people, deliberate and then make their decision.

MR COE: Is the view that Giralang is more likely to be registered already in the public domain or is today the first time?

Mr Zatschler: I think that has always been in the public domain. That was the initial school that was registered. Certainly, in the discussions I have had with various people, that has always been considered to have the highest values in terms of the architect’s eyes and also the community’s. The Flynn nomination was more recent. It was for that reason that the council decided to ask for a comparative assessment. The question is whether you list one, all four or two. They want to make sure that there is an informed decision in terms of the process. They do not want to be seen as necessarily rubber stampers of the listing process. They want to have an objective view on this.

Images from Flynn

Angles on the textured concrete walls


Flynn grounds

Landscape setting & grounds

Enrico Taglietti visting the school he designed

History and design

Memorial to John Flynn

Memorial to John Flynn