Petition protesting plans to advertise The Everest horse race on Opera House gets 120,000 signatures

More than 120,000 Australians have signed a petition protesting against plans to turn the World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House into a light-show billboard for a horse race.

New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian’s directive to Opera House management to display Racing NSW ads for The Everest has sparked a popular change.org movement.

The Royal Randwick event this Saturday is the world’s richest horse race with $13million prizemoney and will feature a performance from One Direction’s Liam Payne.

Petition author Mike Woodcock’s campaign had attracted 123,550 signatures on Monday morning, three days after he protested against the sidelining of Opera House chief executive Louise Herron.

More than 120,000 Australians have signed a petition protesting against plans to turn the World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House into a light-show billboard

More than 120,000 Australians have signed a petition protesting against plans to turn the World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House into a light-show billboard

More than 120,000 Australians have signed a petition protesting against plans to turn the World Heritage-listed Sydney Opera House into a light-show billboard

Petition author Mike Woodcock's campaign had attracted 123,550 signatures on Monday morning, three days after Opera House chief executive Louise Herron was sidelined

Petition author Mike Woodcock's campaign had attracted 123,550 signatures on Monday morning, three days after Opera House chief executive Louise Herron was sidelined

Petition author Mike Woodcock’s campaign had attracted 123,550 signatures on Monday morning, three days after Opera House chief executive Louise Herron was sidelined

It came after Sydney radio 2GB broadcaster Alan Jones savaged her for arguing the Opera House was not a billboard.

‘Let’s remind Alan that the Opera House truly does belong to everyone, by supporting Louise Herron’s staunch defence of one of our city and country’s few instantly recognisable heritage landmarks,’ the petition said. 

He had plenty of support, with petition signer Catherine Ellis dismayed at Danish architect Jorn Utzon’s architectural masterpiece being used for advertising.

‘The Opera House is not a billboard, it is a national landmark,’ she said. 

The Royal Randwick event this Saturday is the world's richest horse race with $13million prizemoney and will feature a performance from One Direction's Liam Payne

The Royal Randwick event this Saturday is the world's richest horse race with $13million prizemoney and will feature a performance from One Direction's Liam Payne

The Royal Randwick event this Saturday is the world’s richest horse race with $13million prizemoney and will feature a performance from One Direction’s Liam Payne

He had plenty of support, with petition signer Catherine Ellis dismayed at Danish architect Jorn Utzon's architectural masterpiece being used for advertising

He had plenty of support, with petition signer Catherine Ellis dismayed at Danish architect Jorn Utzon's architectural masterpiece being used for advertising

He had plenty of support, with petition signer Catherine Ellis dismayed at Danish architect Jorn Utzon’s architectural masterpiece being used for advertising

Another woman was upset the Opera House was being used to promote gambling

Another woman was upset the Opera House was being used to promote gambling

Another woman was upset the Opera House was being used to promote gambling

The idea of advertising on the Opera House was described as a 'debasement of a national icon'

The idea of advertising on the Opera House was described as a 'debasement of a national icon'

The idea of advertising on the Opera House was described as a ‘debasement of a national icon’

Another woman was upset the Opera House was being used to promote gambling.

‘Disgusted that the Opera House is to be used to support racing,’ she said.

The idea of advertising on the Opera House was described as a ‘debasement of a national icon’.

 ‘The Opera House is not the ‘largest billboard’ it’s a space for art and should not be used to sell a commodity that harms our society,’ Joanne Faulkner said.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a former head of Tourism Australia, didn’t agree arguing advertising events on the side of the Opera House would generate economic benefits.

 Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a former head of Tourism Australia, didn't agree arguing advertising events on the side of the Opera House would generate economic benefits

 Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a former head of Tourism Australia, didn't agree arguing advertising events on the side of the Opera House would generate economic benefits

 Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a former head of Tourism Australia, didn’t agree arguing advertising events on the side of the Opera House would generate economic benefits

‘This is one of the biggest events of the year why not put it on the biggest billboard Sydney has,’ he said on Sunday. 

‘I don’t know why people are getting so precious about it. Frankly I thought it was a bit of a no-brainer.

On Friday, Alan Jones demanded the resignation of Opera House chief executive Louise Herron, who had argued the Sydney Harbour monument was ‘not a billboard’.

‘We have a policy that protects our world heritage status,’ Ms Herron told Jones.  

‘We have said yes to the request to put the jockeys’ colours on the sails. 

‘We have no problem with that. What we won’t do is put text or videos of horse running or horses’ numbers or names or the Everest logo on the Opera House. It’s not a billboard’.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Sunday denied she caved into bullying from 2GB broadcaster Alan Jones.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Sunday denied she caved into bullying from 2GB broadcaster Alan Jones.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian on Sunday denied she caved into bullying from 2GB broadcaster Alan Jones.

2GB radio host Alan Jones (pictured) urged Louise Herron to resign from her Sydney Opera House role and said he would sack her if he was NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian

2GB radio host Alan Jones (pictured) urged Louise Herron to resign from her Sydney Opera House role and said he would sack her if he was NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian

2GB radio host Alan Jones (pictured) urged Louise Herron to resign from her Sydney Opera House role and said he would sack her if he was NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian

A fired up Jones replied: ‘Who said? You. Who the hell do you think… who do you think you are?’

Gladys Berejiklian on Sunday denied she caved into bullying from Jones.

‘There’ll be no logos or names – the only words on there are the words on the trophy itself,’ she said.

The Liberal Premier said the Opera House’s status would not be jeopardised.

‘I’m absolutely confident the Sydney Opera House will continue to be the icon that it is globally and for us locally,’ she said. 

Sydney Opera House chief executive Louise Herron (pictured) has come under fire after she refused a proposal for text or branding to be projected onto the landmark's sails to promote The Everest horse race

Sydney Opera House chief executive Louise Herron (pictured) has come under fire after she refused a proposal for text or branding to be projected onto the landmark's sails to promote The Everest horse race

Sydney Opera House chief executive Louise Herron (pictured) has come under fire after she refused a proposal for text or branding to be projected onto the landmark’s sails to promote The Everest horse race

Racing NSW chief executive Peter V’landys said he had been negotiating with the state government for more than a year and initially wanted to use the Sydney Harbour Bridge to promote the Everest race.

‘The Opera House was the alternate venue put forward by the NSW government, which wanted to support the promotion of the event internationally, as it had done for other sporting events,’ he wrote in an opinion piece published in The Sydney Morning Herald on Monday.

‘We are promoting a unique Sydney event, The Everest, not gambling.’

Mr V’landys also said a ‘vast majority’ of the negotiations happened before Jones got involved last week.

‘Call me naive but I certainly didn’t expect there would be such a reaction to us using the Opera House sales for 10 minutes to promote The Everest event internationally.’ 

The son of Peter Hall, the architect who oversaw the completion of the Opera House, described the plan as a ‘desecration’.

‘My father would have been sickened by it … he would not have condoned advertising on the building in any way, lucky he’s not around to see the desecration of our beautiful iconic masterpiece,’ Willy Hall told Fairfax Media. 

A protest, Defend The Opera House, is being held at Bennelong Point tomorrow at 8pm. 

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One comment

  1. Corruption is rampant right to the top. The banks are just a feature oof this problem All in all the government has given £800 billions to these pinstriped mafia thugs. The Government spends money like there is no tommorow. Brown who called himself Prudent to my knowledge has never raised the problem of the corruption in the EU in parliament and the media certainly dont discuss it. The EU Auditors have refiused to sign off the books for 14 years in a row because up to 95% of the EU budget is “unnacounted for” missing—- stolen. We British tax payers pay £35millions a day= £12billions a year = 168billions over 14 years while all 27 member of the EU have paid in many trillions 95% of which is unnacounted for. Our troops wage war and die without the right kit, the NHS lacks the right medicines, the Hospitals kill more than revealed by the diseeases because of the unclean state in them, education suffers all to give the unrepresentative beurocracy in the EU the great life style they have become accustomed to plus a great retirement while the peoples pensions suffer. Gordon makes sure his pension is ok.

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