Our Little Miners Cottages
These little abandoned miners camps were in a very derelict condition until the Leonora Tourist Committee auctioned them off in 1995, for the right to restore. The highest price was $1,000 and bottom price was $20. The volunteers that 'bought' the camps were given titles authorising them to restore the camps under guidelines, using as much of the original materials and colour schemes as possible, at their own cost. Hessian and information sheets were provided. The response was terrific with the involvement of over 100 people from ages ranging from 8 to 72 years old.
The local support for the idea was very strong. We had people doing the actual restoration as well as people boring holes, collecting bits and pieces, painting, allowing access to station rubbish tips for window frames and such, gardening, giving us old newspapers for the walls, perspex and windows. The support was unbelievable and we are very proud of each and every one.
Each house has its own personality. Some were lived-in until not so long ago. Most were left abandoned when the original Sons of Gwalia underground mine closed in 1963. The people that have restored each camp have reflected these moods. Some have restored the houses as they imagine them being still lived in. Others have restored them as though the families have just walked out.