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Lilydale Community Forum • View topic - Written Just before First Meeting - Ideas & Link

Written Just before First Meeting - Ideas & Link

Written Just before First Meeting - Ideas & Link

Postby Sharna S-R on Fri Aug 22, 2008 8:22 pm

Regional Flagship Events Listing 2008 - something to have a look at - see how they do it in NSW for example...

Link: http://corporate.tourism.nes.gov.au/Reg ... P2582.aspx

Hi Mike & Kathryn

I have been having a bit of a think about the meeting today, what it means, what everyone is wanting out of it,
that sort of thing, and have also been watching some of the dialogue via email, and the Examiner and can see that obviously, there are some very strong emotions involved, long history and strong family ties to the use of the area, and to the perceived 'future directions' that obviously, will not always be a majority held view... hence, todays' meeting, which is a great step in the right direction to put peoples varied views out on the table, and make some sort of correlated plan out of them.

I am from the mainland, my husband as well, and although we have only been here four years now, and not really considered 'local' for at least another decade, and feel I do have something, however minor, to contribute towards this discussion.

Before buying a house here, we drove right over Tasmania, visiting the great majority of towns, small cities, large suburbs, and everything else in between. We saw many many beautiful places to live, both under-utilised, and for the time being, under populated, as well as places with their share of socio-economic issues, and bleak futures, The thing that drew us to this little town, as a place to live, to put down roots is a combination of things.

The aesthetics, for one... the unique 'artistic appeal' - the lush green hills, the positive environmental management, the mountain back drop, and that 'picture postcard' effect, very similar to a place called Maleny, in Queensland where I have also lived previously, and have an emotional tie to.

Second, was the community feel - that every facility was right there in town, was available for access, that the service was friendly, and that your neighbours would be prepared to help at some stage, should you ever need assistance.

Third, was the possibilities - this is an old town, but is it young in that it has not been hit yet by housing development, population explosion, mismanagement of public resources, and many of the other mistakes that get made when a small town grows too fast due to inadequate planning, and over-enthusiastic population increase to an area.

What I can see happening is that this town is at a cross-roads, with equal pressure from propanants of 'past use' and 'future use' vying for their time in the sun. I have seen, through the media, and through personal experience many small towns face this problem, as the demographics of Australia change, and as the populations shift, and our natural resources and how to use them are debated in light of how to create sustainable enterprises and industry for the future, as well as maintaining employment and job skills within small and regional country areas.

Some towns manage it well, succeeding and growing from the process and others, just don't - brought down by a mixture of disagreement, stubborness to change and adapt and an uwillingness to see a larger picture beyond what they have lived with and known for decades.

Forestry, inevitably will infringe on this town in some way, shape or form in the future, that is the nature of big business in Northern Tasmania - unfortunately, it has money, not compassion, but it is up to the town community to provide the compassion and to decide if they wish to be in control of how it happens, so that it can be managed and they are not at it's mercy and subject to indiscriminate use of the land.

Forestry and Gunns aside, I feel personally, that this town would benefit enormously by sharing itself with the Australian population. We have so much to offer in this area of the world - the Hollybank tourist attraction down the road is a fantastic start, and I heartily like the idea being bounced around at the moment of a managed walking trail of a similar quality to the Overland track. Combining this with a horse riding trail, or mountain (push, not motor) bike trails, with campsites, and or accommodation options along its route and the whole idea starts to show great promise. I can envisage the area hosting a variety of events and future festivals based around facilities such as these.

What I would also personally love to see, and I think that I have heard something similar being thrown around for the Scottsdale area, is a skills or training centre, to manage and facilitiate jobs training for the future. Obviously, Forestry would be in on this already, but if it could incorpate other trades and job directions, value adding in the process - the view is, timber work obviously, but how about adding to that several TAFE trades training options such as construction worker, engineering and builder training, land management programs, fencing skills, riparian management, horticulture, propigation and permiculture skills, and perhaps farming management, and or tourist industry training and hospitalty skills.

Regional areas are crying out for these sorts of opportunities to keep young people in an area, and also provide jobs and long term employment options for existing populations. This would be a long term venture, with excellent merit for the Northern Tas populations.

Another direction perhaps could be monthly fresh produce markets, incorporating local grown items, hand made sauces, jams, foodstuffs etc, and antique stalls, art and craft, clothing stalls, unique products and gifts etc - I know this idea has been done many times before, but if a point of unique difference can be incorporated into the event, it would be regular income for the area, and of course, bring with it visitors, and their wallets. While here, they drive around, visit the attractions, buy their lunches, buy fuel and vow to come back again and show their friends and family.

And my last idea, is an annual festival - be it based around music, art, livestock or a vibrant and eclectic mix of all three - if this town could become well known and recognised for something as exciting as showcasing itself through a festival, bringing in a wide cross section of the community, it would be a fantastic opportunity to display harmony and diversity, while proving that we are able to move forward as a community towards a sustainable and long term future.
Sharna S-R
 
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