Ted Brambleby and Kerrie Trees at the Marine Discovery Centre at Hastings Point.
Ted Brambleby and Kerrie Trees at the Marine Discovery Centre at Hastings Point.

$1m plan to deliver state-of-the-art marine centre

TED Brambleby will deliver his final session at the Hastings Point Marine Discovery Centre ahead of a major $1 million refurbishment this month.

The marine biologist and museum’s co-founder, who began collecting the very first specimens in 1960, will watch on as the staple of North Star Holiday Resort gets a facelift.

The passionate environmentalist first shared his displays from the boot of his car, driving coastal roads and stopping to educate beachgoers, scuba divers, snorkellers and like-minded ocean lovers along the way.

Now, the new Marine Discovery Centre will incorporate state-of-the-art technology in a world-class display of marine and coastal science.

The centre claims to be one of the largest independent collections in Australia and will soon mix traditional displays with interactive digital terminals and audio visual elements.

After the renovation, the centre is tipped to host lectures, social events, classes, group gatherings and meditation.

This is a far cry from the centre’s humble beginnings in 1999 when Mr Brambleby joined forces with teacher and business partner Kerrie Trees to host camps and day visits for students and holiday makers at the Hastings Point Caravan Park.

In 2008, proprietors of North Star at Hastings Point, Ian and Diana Beadel, helped fund the move to relocate the resource centre and collections to the resort.

Mr Beadel allocated space in his state-of-the-art Seascape Building for the token rent of $1 per year.

The Beadels will once again invest in the centre across upcoming months to ensure the longevity of this unique environmental learning facility.

“Many aren’t aware that this is the only privately-funded Marine Education facility in Australia, a valuable community asset that we believe must be fiercely protected,” Mr Beadel said.

“This facility is one of a kind in Australia, if not the world, and this latest redevelopment is the next phase of our long-term strategy to ensure its future.”

A team, including Mr Brambleby’s and Ms Tree’s son Rhett, will continue to deliver the lessons to treasure and protect the marine and coastal wealth of Hastings Point and surrounding areas.

Ms Trees said despite the changes, the fundamental principles of the centre are the same.

“We want to inspire people to experience nature. In turn they are encouraged to look at their individual footprints and become empowered to take responsibility for protecting our oceans, beaches, rock pools, creeks, rivers and our unique country, now and into the future,” she said.