Willoughby residents are being encouraged to nominate the local people or events that helped to shape our rich heritage in the second round of the $5 million NSW Blue Plaques program.

Member for Willoughby Tim James said the program is a fantastic opportunity for the Willoughby community to learn about and celebrate our local heritage.

“This initiative is all about recognising the eclectic characters, personalities and important public figures that have made or become part of the history of Willoughby and our state.” Mr James said.

“I encourage people to research the Willoughby region’s local history and nominate individuals and stories for a Blue Plaque.”

“The second round of nominations for Blue Plaques opened on 13 November, and close 21 December 2022.”

To be eligible, each Blue Plaque must meet eligibility criteria and go through an extensive fact-checking process carried out by independent historians to verify the story behind the Plaque.

Minister for Heritage James Griffin said the second round of nominations opens as 14 new Blue Plaques are announced.

“Our newest 14 Blue Plaques recipients are an eclectic mix of people, events and stories that helped shape our State,” Mr Griffin said.

“Among them, we have Australia poet and author Dorothea Mackellar who, at the age of 19, wrote the words we all know and love, ‘I love a sunburnt country, a land of sweeping plains’.

“We’re recognising the 1965 Freedom Ride, which was pivotal in highlighting the racial discrimination experienced by Aboriginal people, challenging a ban on Aboriginal ex-servicemen at the Walgett Returned Services League, and local laws barring Aboriginal children from the Moree and Kempsey swimming pools.

“We’re celebrating the life of Dr Thomas Fiaschi, who migrated to Australia from Italy at the age of 22, and went on to become a pioneering surgeon whose expertise significantly improved the survival rate of patients after surgery.

“The 35 Blue Plaques announced so far are just the beginning of this fantastic program, which is reinvigorating community connections with our rich NSW heritage.”

For more information on Blue Plaques recipients, installation locations, and to find out how to nominate a Blue Plaque, visit the Blue Plaques website