THE tiny town of Nundle has staged a stunning coup by claiming the NSW Tidy Towns top gong in Armidale on Saturday night.
Although it may be one of the tiniest towns in NSW, it’s also the tidiest and has the awards to show for it – and the townsfolk couldn’t be happier.
It’s third time lucky for the town of about 300 people, which has been bridesmaid but never the bride.
That’s all changed now.
Nundle Tidy Towns committee co-ordinator Kay Burnes said the town won six out of seven awards in its category last year, but still didn’t win the big one.
“This is an opportunity to showcase the survival of a small rural community and its achievements,” she said. “We’ve grasped tourism and taken advantage of our most valuable resource to the community, which is open to all ages.
“We have such diverse people in diverse fields on the committee and in the community. The submission had to show how we drew on the knowledge of the community, the achievements in the past 12 months, research on what’s gone into developing the projects and the success and sustainability of the projects.”
Mrs Burnes said the honour would not only boost Nundle, but the region would also benefit from extra visitation.
Billy Smith is the local groundsman who will retire next year after 24 years of service to the community.
His dream was always for Nundle to win the state award before his retirement, so he said this was culmination of his dream.
Tidy Towns committee member Marcia Schofield said the award was an opportunity to showcase the town and community, which had 23 committees in it.
“It’s about community pride,” she said.
Nundle Community Development committee Geoff Cummins said the award was the result of a “very effective co-operative partnership between individuals, business and community groups”.
“The emphasis is on sustainability, not just maintaining the present, but consciously building the future,” he said.
Not only was Nundle named the tidiest town in NSW, it also won the Spirit of the Bush Award
Nundle will now contest the national awards in Victor Harbour, South Australia, next year.
2013 Tidy Towns Assessor, Michael Dodkin, said Nundle is one of the most impressive towns he has assessed in the last 16 years.
“Nundle is one of the highlights of my assessing since I started in 1997,” he said.
“This town lives on sustainability, their efforts are a credit to this community and it is certainly working for them. Nundle’s future is in their community spirit, as well has their history.”
Tamworth was highly commended in the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage - Cultural Heritage Award, Energy Efficiency and Water Conservation Award and Packaging Stewardship Forum - Waste Management and Litter Reduction Award for its population category. Murrurundi was also highly commended in the Packaging Stewardship Forum - Waste Management and Litter Reduction Award.