Huge snub to Games

Tweed Daily News - - NEWS -

LET me of­fer a pat on the back to the Tweed Heads and District Cham­ber of Com­merce for tak­ing the ini­tia­tive to boost tourism in the Tweed.

The cham­ber’s place­ment of a large ban­ner-style sign along the end of the Gold Coast High­way ad­ja­cent to the air­port is at least a tan­gi­ble ef­fort to raise aware­ness of what is ar­guably the best part of Aus­tralia.

The Games is the largest event ever staged in Queens­land and the largest in the south­ern hemi­sphere for a decade. The global tele­vi­sion au­di­ence was 1.5 bil­lion for the open­ing cer­e­mony. There are 1640 ac­cred­ited me­dia rep­re­sen­ta­tives camped on the coast and count­less oth­ers here to file copy about the coast.

The great­est pro­mo­tion op­por­tu­nity for the Tweed ever. And this is our re­sponse?

As a for­mer vice-pres­i­dent of the cham­ber, I am cer­tainly not cast­ing as­per­sions here.

But oth­ers at coun­cil and tourism bodies should hang their heads in shame.

War­ren Pol­glase’s pres­ence at the un­veil­ing does not ex­cuse his fail­ure to get coun­cil into gear.

Let’s face it, this sec­tion of road­way is the most dis­gust­ing in the en­tire Tweed.

Other than those who de­face it reg­u­larly with graf­fiti. And it is a com­par­a­tively de­serted stretch of road.

One bill­board for a week in the heart of the coast would have gen­er­ated po­ten­tially thou­sands of vis­its. Aaaagh!

It is mo­rally bank­rupt to be­lieve that those who al­ready live here can erect fences to keep the rest out.

And it is a tragedy that a lack of jobs forces our chil­dren to flee the mag­nif­i­cence – and safety – of the Tweed to find work else­where be­cause there are no jobs here.

In which case, some ef­fec­tive pro­mo­tion of the Tweed is vi­tal.

We need a sen­si­ble com­mu­nity de­bate about man­ag­ing tourism and pop­u­la­tion growth.

But to pre­tend that the big­gest event ever on our doorstep could have been so pa­thet­i­cally ig­nored (not you, cham­ber) is a scan­dal. — David Rus­sell, Tweed Heads South

PHOTO: SCOTT POWICK

WEL­COME MAT: Dis­cover the Tweed sig­nage along the Nsw/queens­land bor­der out­side the Gold Coast Air­port.

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