Treasures of three museums find a new home

A $34 million investment from the NSW Government has brought together collections of three of Australia’s leading museums and put them on permanent display for the public to enjoy for the first time.

Bathurst copper butterfly (Paralucia spinifera)

The Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, the Australian Museum and Sydney Living Museums have collaborated to open the new Museums Discovery Centre (MDC) in Castle Hill.

NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for the Arts Troy Grant said the Museums Discovery Centre offers the public a unique, behind the scenes look at three of Sydney’s most exciting museum collections.

“This is an Australian-first idea to bring together three of the state’s major museums, increase public access to their unique collections and offer a museum experience you can only get in here in western Sydney,” Mr Grant said.

NSW Environment and Heritage Minister Mark Speakman said some of the objects and specimens had never been on public display before.

“The MDC’s extraordinary collection includes objects as large as the Ice Bird yacht from Dr David Lewis’s exploration of Antarctica and as small as rare butterflies; as ancient as a 20,000 year old Paleolithic artefact from South Africa; and as locally significant as furnishings from historic NSW homes,” Mr Speakman said.

The MDC features 9000 square meters of upgraded storage to properly protect these priceless collections and improved display facilities to give the public better access.

The Museums Discovery Centre, at 172 Showground Road, Castle Hill will be open for FREE to the public on Saturday and Sunday 17-18 September. From 19 September the Centre will be open from Monday to Friday each week and four weekends a year.

Visit museumsdiscoverycentre.com for more information.