Coffs Harbour Showground
Coffs Harbour Showground coffsshowground.com.au

I'll give it back to the people

NSW Minister for Lands Tony Kelly says he is not going to sell Coffs Harbour's showground and he has plans to hand its management back to a local body.

"There is the potential to get more use out of it and we want to encourage more use," Mr Kelly said.

Mr Kelly said once the Showground's finances were sorted out "we'll get a trust going again, but it may not be a community trust, it might be the council."

He said local councils had the equipment and staff to achieve economic management of reserves.

Coffs Harbour Mayor Cr Keith Rhoades has indicated the council might look favourably on taking over management of the huge site, which stretches from the highway along the northern Coffs Creek walk.

There has been wide-spread anxiety that rising prices for rentals for groups using the Showground are designed to price the venue out of reach of community groups and a preamble to an argument that the site would be better used if it was sold for commercial purposes.
 
The Minister also said it was up to the Showground Trust administrator and the Show Society to work out the problems which led to the cancellation of the 2008 Coffs Harbour Show.

Mr Kelly said he had been impressed by the Showgrounds caravan park, one of 300 on Crown land in NSW.

The Coffs Harbour Show Society has promised to call a public meeting to gather interest in the 2009 Coffs Harbour Show and elect a new committee to run the Show, but has not yet set a date.
 
The Coffs Harbour Super Show, run by the Showmen's Guild of Australia on two of the days reserved for the annual show, saw poor attendances and local business firms did not support the event.


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