New MAAS Museum

Planning continues for the Museum’s longer term future in Parramatta, following the announcement that the Riverbank site will be the site of the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Parramatta.

This represents a once in a generation opportunity to develop a twenty first century museum that responds to growth and the changing shape of Sydney, and to contemporary methods of content delivery, learning and collaboration.

Embodying the best of Australian ingenuity and innovation, the Museum will profile one of the world’s great collections as well as contribute to the NSW Government’s priority sectors including digital, education, creative industries and health.

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Upper House inquiry
An Upper House Inquiry was launched on 23 June 2016 to inquire into and report on the performance or effectiveness of the NSW Government agencies responsible for the organisation, structure and funding of museums and galleries in New South Wales. As part of the inquiry, the MAAS Trustees submitted a statement, and responded to two sets of questions on notice, which are provided at the link below. MAAS Director, Dolla Merrillees and President of the MAAS Trust, Barney Glover, appeared before the inquiry and transcripts are available at the link below.

Parliament of NSW Inquiry into Museums and Galleries


Image caption, above: Locomotive No. 1 hauled the first passenger train in New South Wales in 1855 and went on to regular service on the Sydney to Parramatta line. From 1857 Locomotive No. 1 was used mainly for hauling goods and passengers between Sydney, Campbelltown, Richmond and Penrith. It was withdrawn from service in 1877 after 22 years of operation, having travelled 155,667 miles (250,468 km).

It is extremely rare for any country or state to retain its first locomotive. This locomotive is one of the most significant objects in the MAAS collection, and has been in the Museum’s possession for more than 120 years. It is a very rare survivor of a McConnell goods express locomotive of the early 1850s and is believed to be the only known example of its type in the world.