Beach bonanza!

STEVE Gooley sees Coffs Harbour becoming the home of surf sports over the next 20 years if the city stages successful Australian Surf Life Saving Championships at Boambee Beach in 2010-12.

The general manager of the Bachrach Group of Companies, which runs Park Beach Plaza and HomeBase, says he believes the surf titles will be just the first of many major events to be held at the venue.

The businessman has decided to get on the front foot in declaring his support for taking the titles to Boambee and for what they can do for Coffs Harbour over the next 20 years.

"We talk about the benefits from the Wallabies having their training base here the surf championships will outweigh those benefits four-fold," he said yesterday.

"With our position in the middle of the east coast we are ideally set up to become the home of the sport over the next 20 years."

Mr Gooley said it was time more business people voiced their support of bringing the championships to Coffs Harbour.

He also has a ready counter to the suggestion his enthusiasm is based on the business benefits he will receive from the expected 15,000 extra visitors for each championships.

"For retailers it will be like having a second Christmas three years in a row but it is also about what flows on from there," he said.

"People will be coming from Queensland, Perth and Melbourne who wouldn't come to Coffs Harbour otherwise. Many will see what a sensational place it is and want to come back.

"That flow-on effect will be enormous and will last for 10, 15 and 20 years."



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