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Mr Gordon Ramsay MLA
Minister for the Arts and Cultural Events
ACT Legislative Assembly

Dear Minister

We are pleased to present to you the 2017-18 Annual Report of the Cultural Facilities Corporation (CFC), which has been prepared in accordance with Section 7(2) of the Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act 2004 and according to the framework of the Annual Report Directions. The document has been prepared in conformity with other legislation applicable to the preparation of the Annual Report by the CFC.

We hereby certify that the attached Annual Report, and information provided by the CFC for whole of government reporting, are honest and accurate, and that all material information on the operations of the CFC has been included for the period 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2018. We also certify that fraud prevention has been managed in accordance with the Public Sector Management Standards 2006, Part 2.

Section 13 of the Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act 2004 requires that you present the Report to the ACT Legislative Assembly within 15 weeks after the end of the reporting year.

We are pleased to advise you that the CFC achieved very good outcomes during 2017–18.  We met or surpassed all but one of our performance targets for the year; achieved better than budget results; and completed all our 2017–18 capital works and capital upgrade projects, allowing us to acquit 100% of our capital works funding for the year. 

In achieving these results, we continued to pursue our vision : for Canberra to be a creative capital that values the arts for their intrinsic qualities, their contribution to building a more inclusive and resilient society, their support for making the city an exciting place to live and an attractive destination for business and tourism, and their important role in the economy of the ACT and region.  We seek to provide leadership in this creative city, providing high quality cultural experiences based on the arts and heritage resources that we hold in trust for the people of Canberra, and playing a significant role in the region’s cultural and economic life.

A major highlight of the year was the opening of the national tour of the musical MAMMA MIA! at the Canberra Theatre Centre, attracting over 32,000 patrons.  Other highlights for the year included the first European tour of a Canberra Museum and Gallery (CMAG) exhibition, when Peace, Love and World War: The Denmans, Empire and Australia 1910-1917 toured to King’s College, London.  CMAG also celebrated its 20th birthday through the major exhibition Celebration : 20 years of collecting visual art at CMAG.  In a year of other significant anniversaries, Calthorpes’ House celebrated its 90th birthday with a program of activities, while the CFC marked its own 20th anniversary as an organisation at a celebratory event attended by past and present arts ministers, board members, staff and volunteers.  Through these and many other activities, we welcomed over 405,000 people to our venues and programs during 2017–18.

During the year, the CFC continued to work closely with other ACT Government agencies on initiatives to plan future directions of the city centre and the future provision of cultural facilities in Civic, including new theatre facilities.  The CFC also collaborated with the developers of the new Constitution Place project adjacent to the Canberra Theatre Centre, in order to minimise the impact of the project’s construction phase on theatre activities and maximise the eventual benefits of this project for the CFC’s city-based facilities. 

In providing this Annual Report to you, we acknowledge that the CFC’s achievements in 2017–18 were only made possible through the efforts of many people.  It is our great pleasure to recognise their efforts here.

Firstly we thank our fellow board members, who provided direction and guidance to the CFC throughout the year.  In December 2017 we farewelled John Hindmarsh on his completion of six years as Chairman.  We take this opportunity to record our appreciation, not only for the leadership and advocacy that John provided during this period, but also for his great generosity in terms of the significant sponsorships and donations he provided to support the organisation’s work. 

Board member Eugene Kalenjuk completed his six years of service in March 2018 and again we record our appreciation for his contribution to the organisation, especially by chairing the Audit Committee of the Board and making generous donations to support activities at Lanyon.   In a further departure from the Board, Raoul Craemer resigned when he took up employment in the Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate.  We are most grateful for Raoul’s contribution to the Board’s work and for the support he provided to a number of the CFC’s activities. 

A formal Board renewal process is underway to fill the vacancies created by these departures, with a public call for expressions of interest in membership taking place in May 2018. 

As Chair and Chief Executive Officer, we are ably supported by the very dedicated and skilled staff of the CFC.  It is a pleasure to work with them and we take this opportunity to express our appreciation of their efforts and our congratulations for all they have achieved.

The CFC benefits from the generosity, assistance and support of many volunteers, including the members of our three advisory committees.  We record our gratitude for the contribution made by committee members during the year, a contribution that is provided on a voluntary basis.  Other volunteers made a vital contribution to the work of Lanyon, Calthorpes’ House and Mugga-Mugga, including the National Trust volunteers at Lanyon. 

Finally, we are pleased to acknowledge the contribution of our principal funding agencies and our many sponsors, donors and supporters.  The CFC receives its major funding from the ACT Government.  This major funding is welcomed and appreciated.  Our sponsors and donors again provided generous support for the CFC’s activities.  The CFC was grateful for the extent of donations to CMAG, including monetary donations by private individuals such as longstanding donor Meredith Hinchliffe, and donations of works of art, such as works by senior artists Hiroe Swen, Ninon Geier and Fay Skyring.  We were fortunate to enjoy the support of many other sponsors and donors, too numerous to mention here but documented in full in this Annual Report.

The efforts and commitment of the CFC’s Board, staff, volunteers, sponsors and supporters continue to be vital in pursuing our role of providing cultural leadership, enriching the cultural life of Canberra, and delivering the highest standards of service to the community. 

We commend this Annual Report to you, thank you for all your support for our work, and look forward to the year ahead.

Yours sincerely

Louise Douglas
Cultural Facilities Corporation
October 2018

Harriet Elvin
Chief Executive Officer
Cultural Facilities Corporation
2 October 2018