Published: Wed, October 10, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Petition Supporting Opera House CEO Gains Almost 150000 Supporters

Petition Supporting Opera House CEO Gains Almost 150000 Supporters

On Friday, the NSW Government instructed the Sydney Opera House to allow Racing NSW to project an advertisement for the upcoming Everest horse race onto the Opera House sails, overruling Opera House chief executive Louise Herron who said that doing so would threaten the building's World Heritage status.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian has backed Alan Jones' position in favour of horse race advertising on the Sydney Opera House.

"This is a global event that receives global attention, " she added, referring to the Sydney horse race, which will be run on Sunday.

As Mike Woodcock, who started the Change.org petition, put it, "Alan Jones and his Gambling mates at Racing NSW want to turn the Opera House into their own promotional billboard".

Racing NSW's proposed projection for the Opera House.

Anti-gambling campaigner Tim Costello said the advertising demonstrated the power of the Australian horse racing industry that made a profit of A$3.3 billion Australian dollars ($3.6 billion) previous year.

Mr Morrison, a former tourism marketer, defended the advert, calling the Opera House the "biggest billboard Sydney has".

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"These events generate massive economic opportunities for the state and the city. I don't know why people are getting so precious about it", Mr Morrison said.

"It's not like they're painting it (the promotion) on there", the Liberal leader said on Monday.

"The management of the Opera House have a duty to the people of New South Wales to protect the Opera House from exploitation". I mean, it's some lights flashing up there for a brief moment of time. "I just don't understand why we tie ourselves up in knots about these things". It ... has politicians in the palm of its hand, ' the anti-gambling campaigner told the Australian Broadcasting Corp.

Later on the program, Jones went on a tirade against "lefties" taking issue with the promotion of horse racing on the Opera House sails, wildly claiming it was hypocritical given the event space was sold for concerts and events and "whatever will raise money for Louise".

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

Sydney Opera House management refused parts of the request because it would contravene its policy on illumination, which is created to protect its World Heritage status. The Everest is the world's richest turf race and injected $100 million into the NSW economy a year ago.

A petition against the plan to use the Opera House as a billboard has reached 170,000 signatures in three days.

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