“We could be in a village in Kytheria right now, in the open,” Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Hospitality and Racing and Minister for the Arts, George Souris told the people gathered at the opening of the Greek Museum recently.

“There is one difference, the Roxy.

It is incredible to imagine that those who came from the island and who were mostly, if not all, farmers, imagined and then produced this wonderful edifice that we have here, and the business acumen that was obviously quite resonant within them,” he said.

Member for Northern Tablelands, Adam Marshall, Roxy Patron Nancy MacInnes, and Minister for Tourism Major Events Hospitality and Racing and Minister for the Arts, George Souris.

Member for Northern Tablelands, Adam Marshall, Roxy Patron Nancy MacInnes, and Minister for Tourism Major Events Hospitality and Racing and Minister for the Arts, George Souris. (photo Bingara Advocate)

Of Kytherian descent, George Souris was born in Gunnedah and “brought up in very similar circumstances to what we are celebrating here tonight”.

He congratulated the Gwydir Shire Council and Roxy Greek Museum Committee on completing the museum.

“It is a significant project celebrating the Greek community pioneering cultural and economic achievements in regional New South Wales.

“As the product of this community, it is particularly special to be here and see what has taken place. The heritage of this theatre and café built by Greek immigrants in the 1930s should be celebrated and the opening of this museum will ensure that this is the case”.

He said he and the NSW government were proud to support the Roxy’s redevelopment “Communities here are always about people, and I am delighted to see the locals joining in with Greek Australians in taking on the role of custodians of this wonderful heritage,” Mr. Souris said.