Balonne Beacon - - FRONT PAGE - Joshua Macree joshua.macree@west­ern­starnews.com

DIR­RAN­BANDI has been nom­i­nated for this year’s Tidy Towns as­sess­ment due to a num­ber of ini­tia­tives em­a­nat­ing from the small com­mu­nity dur­ing the past 12 months.

The Tidy Towns pro­gram is run by Keep Aus­tralia Beau­ti­ful and aims to en­cour­age, mo­ti­vate and cel­e­brate sus­tain­abil­ity achieve­ments of ru­ral and re­gional com­mu­ni­ties across Aus­tralia.

Balonne Shire coun­cil­lor Saman­tha O’Toole said as­ses­sors looked at a num­ber of fac­tors when eval­u­at­ing a com­mu­nity for Tidy Town ac­cred­i­ta­tion.

“This can of­ten in­clude things like en­vi­ron­men­tal in­no­va­tion and pro­tec­tion, cul­tural and her­itage ini­tia­tives, ex­am­ples of com­mu­nity spirit, clean schools, waste man­age­ment and en­ergy in­no­va­tion, so it’s pretty com­pre­hen­sive,” she said.

“The Tidy Towns used to look at specif­i­cally clean towns but have re­ally ex­panded out over the last few years to look at a di­verse range of ini­tia­tives and has be­come more com­plex.”

Cr O’Toole said the ac­cred­i­ta­tion would be a fit­ting re­ward for a town that had faced a num­ber of hard­ships in re­cent years.

“Dir­ran­bandi is a com­mu­nity that has suf­fered sev­eral knocks and has han­dled some very chal­leng­ing cir­cum­stances due to drought wa­ter buy­back,” she said.

“One of the main things we spoke at length about was the idea of com­mu­nity spirit and how the town of Dir­ran­bandi has shown ini­tia­tive by help­ing it­self.

“This was shown through the re­cent Paul Kelly con­cert, and the driv­ing force was the com­mu­nity want­ing to fund its ag pro­gram at the school.”


LEAPS AND BOUNDS: Richard Back­house, Saman­tha O'Toole, Jack Tay­lor, Colin Hal­l­i­day and David Curtin, CEO Keep Aus­tralia Beau­ti­ful.

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