Thursday, 18 October, 2018

Planned racing ad on sails of Sydney Opera House divisive

The A$13 million Everest race is due to take place in Sydney and organisers are pushing to promote it on the white wings of the Opera House Premier defends controversial decision to promote horse race on Opera House
Kristopher Love | 10 October, 2018, 10:55

Following the NSW government's controversial choice to allow the upcoming Everest horse race to be promoted on the sails of the Sydney Opera House, an online petition supporting its CEO Louise Herron - who rejected the ads - has gained almost 150,000 signatures in a couple of days (at time of publication).

The craven decision by Liberal Premier Gladys Berejiklian to override the Opera House's chief executive, Louise Herron, who had upheld the guidelines, came after a Sydney radio presenter with an extensive track record of belligerence and long-standing personal interests in racing, Alan Jones, hectored and bullied Ms Herron in an encounter that outraged many thousands of people.

Another said: "I don't know what the big deal with using the Opera House to promote the Everest is all about we used it for other sports cricket Rugby even the Mardi Cras it has nothing to do with gambling it's just the race in it's self who does it harm nobody".

More than 100,000 people have signed a petition opposing a plan advertise The Everest race, the richest on turf in the world, on the sails of the World Heritage-listed building.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has rejected Prime Minister Scott Morrison's description of the Sydney Opera House as a "billboard", saying a line should be drawn at describing "national heritage" as a canvas for advertising.

A petition opposing the plan to project Tuesday night's barrier draw for the Everest race onto the venue's sails has garnered more than 206,000 signatures and protesters plan to disrupt the event.

"This is one of the biggest events of the year", Morrison said Sunday.

"These events generate massive economic opportunities for the state and the city".

He continued: 'It's not as if they're painting it on there.

A fired up Jones cut her off mid-sentence, saying: "We own the Opera House, do you get that message?"

Anti-gambling campaigners have slammed the move by the New South Wales Government, which runs contrary to the views of Opera House management. I mean, it's some lights flashing up there for a brief moment of time. It. has politicians in the palm of its hand, " Costello, a spokesman for the Alliance for Gambling Reform, told the ABC.

Graham Quint, a National Trust of Australia manager, said the advertising contravened federal and state laws governing use of the Opera House.

As some have remarked, how lucky we are to still have a public Sydney Opera House.

Sydney Opera House policy on illumination of the sails states: "No logo or corporate identity shall be permitted to be projected onto the Sails".