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Regional Arts Development Central West NSW

Case Study: Digging Deep Time

002 2023-11-06 at 5.16.04 pm

An award winning whole-of-community focus produced content and sharing of stories related to the local Megafauna once found at Wellington Caves.

The Project Zone is a Central West based that specialises in developing innovative collaborative projects utilising the power of story, technology and creativity to make a positive and sustainable difference in people and communities across regional NSW.

The project won the 2023 KAB NSW Tidy Towns Awards Cultural Heritage Award (in the category B, population 1501-5000).

Here’s the recap of this project:

In 2022, the Project Zone, with the support of the Wellington Caves Complex, successfully applied for a grant from the Department of Enterprise, Investment and Trade: Community Development Fund to deliver a whole-of-community project involving Wellington’s schools in producing content and the sharing of stories related to the local Megafauna.

The project delivered a range of skills-building workshops, cultural activities, and curriculum linked educational opportunities to students across Wellington. Workshops comprised research, scriptwriting and filmmaking, where participants learned about the significance of the megafauna discovery at Wellington Caves, the first such find in Australia, through videoconference workshops with Prof Gavin Prideaux from Flinders University, South Australia. Students learned about their lived environment, the pre-history of Wellington, the social and traditional history of the traditional owners. Students also visited the Wellington Caves, along with Wellington’s Wiradjuri Elders, who discussed the significance and traditional stories of the megafauna.

The project provided young people with the opportunity to learn new transferable employability and vocational skills, opening new pathways into vocational outcomes in tourism, palaeontology, museums and galleries, and curatorial/research professions.

Outputs of the project include a mixture of short films and documentaries focussing on the significance of megafauna in Wellington. These include documentary accounts of the resource, historical re-enactments of significant events in the megafauna story, the Wiradjuri Elders’ and their local, traditional stories, and tourism-oriented promotional films.

This type of activity is crucial for ensuring the importance of Wellington Caves is communicated to the next generation and that visitors to the region understand the compelling and vital role the site plays in our understanding of prehistory. The completed material (short films & artworks) will be showcased state-wide as part of a live streaming event broadcast directly from the Wellington Caves Complex to schools around NSW on December 7, 2023. The event will also involve project partners Flinders University and the Australian Museum.

The Digging Deep Time project forms part of a larger megafauna initiative planned for the town and region, centred around education, cultural, employment, and tourism.

Project Partners: Project Zone, Wellington Caves Complex, Dubbo Regional Council, Flinders University, Wellington Public School, Wellington High School, St Mary’s Catholic School.

Contact: Vince Lovecchio

  1. 0407 454 832


001: Cathedral Cave, Wellington Caves Complex

002: St Mary’s Catholic School

003: Palaeontology Student, Flinders University

004: George Clinton, Flinders University

005: Amelia Cox, Palaeontology Student, Flinders University

006: Wellington Elder, Aunty Glenda Bell relating Cave Origin story to students from St Mary’s Catholic School

007: Wellington Public School