Sunday, December 5, 2021

Rugby leagues to be held in regional towns for economic uplift

Footy fans will be able to enjoy a weekend road trip to the regions and see their team vie for valuable NRL premiership points at world class regional stadiums, thanks to the Regional Events Acceleration Fund.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro said a total of $450,000 has been provided to Dubbo Regional, Coffs Harbour City and Mid-Western Regional Councils to help bring some of the league’s best teams to the bush.

Mr Barilaro said playing NRL matches in regional towns provides locals with an opportunity to see NRL stars play in person and gives fans further afield another great reason to take a trip to the bush.

“Round 11 will see Dubbo host a potential top of the table clash when the Rabbitohs take on the Panthers at Apex Oval, while the Sharks will take on the Titans at C.ex Coffs International Stadium the following week,” Mr Barilaro said.

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“Fans coming to towns for these games means more heads on beds, more money spent in local restaurants, more visits to Taronga Western Plains Zoo, the Old Dubbo Gaol, the Big Banana Fun Park or Dolphin Marine Conservation Park in Coffs Harbour.

“The round six clash between the Sea Eagles and Titans at Mudgee attracted 6,000 people, including many Manly fans who were no doubt more than happy to spend a little more in local stores after seeing their team hand Gold Coast a 36-0 drubbing.”

Mr Barilaro said the Regional Events Acceleration Fund encourages new domestic and international events to locate themselves in regional areas, where they will have a positive economic impact.

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“Regional events have been disrupted by drought, bushfire, COVID-19 and floods and this fund is helping to attract new major domestic and international events to the bush and grow existing events into even bigger and better ones,” Mr Barilaro said

The $20 million Regional Events Acceleration Fund is part of the $2 billion Regional Growth Fund, designed to support growing regional centres, activate local economies and improve services and community infrastructure for regional communities.

Applications are open now and will close on 17 December 2021, or when funding is fully committed.

For further information, including program guidelines and eligibility criteria, go to nsw.gov.au/REAFund. 

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