2 May 2018

Overall our community showed strong support this ANZAC Day across all the services held in our local government area. Councillors did a magnificent job of attending commemoration services and representing Council. RLS Sub-branches and organising committees should be congratulated for their efforts to organise the various services and should be pleased with the community response. We now look forward to Armistice Day and all of the functions that will be held locally. Congratulations to local family business Little Hill Farm and Tiliaris Lovedale Limes who have both been named state winners in the 2018 Delicious Produce Awards.

Little Hill Farm were nominated by another local business owner and chef, Troy Rhoades-Brown who features the unique Little Hill Farm pasture raised chicken on his Muse Restaurant and Muse Kitchen menus. It is fantastic to see local businesses supporting each other but also wonderful to see local produce being favoured by local chefs and food loving visitors. There are many benefits from local businesses forging these relationships as it not only adds value to the greater visitor experience, the benefits of collaboration flow back into the local area in the form of jobs, strengthening supply chains and supporting a self-sustaining localised economy. 

This affirms the approach taken by Council’s Economic Development Team when looking in our own backyard for business opportunities and developing a strategy to attract new business that will complement, not compete with local businesses. Soon residents will also have the opportunity to support more local businesses with the launch of the new Buy Local initiative. Council’s Economic Development Team will be working hard over the next few months to produce a Local Resident’s Free Discount and Entertainment Guide. This will be a guide book offering unique rewards to residents to encourage them to spend locally and generate more local dollars. Last minute advertising is still available for businesses find out more please visit advancecessnock.com.au/buy-local/.

Saturday 5 May marks the first Parkrun to be held in the Cessnock Local Government Area. This is wonderful news for our community. Each week at 8am every resident, of every age and ability can meet at St Phillips Christian College and take part in the 5km run at their own pace. As a community we need to be embracing these types of initiatives and getting involved. Council is certainly very supportive as it fits very nicely into the objectives under our Health and Wellbeing Plan. To get involved in Parkrun visit www.parkrun.com.au/nulkaba/.

Last Friday we welcomed an announcement by Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, Scot MacDonald MLC that our community will take part in an innovative program aimed at strengthening social housing communities. Over three years Cessnock will receive $782,270 in NSW Government funding for a number of targeted projects. Residents will have the opportunity to be involved in consultation and are encouraged to get involved when the time comes.