TAMWORTH’S main street will close a day earlier than usual for this year’s country music festival.
Peel Street will be shut off to traffic on Thursday morning, rather than Friday, to give Tamworth Regional Council more time to set everything up.
Council’s country music festival manger Barry Harley said the extra day would allow everyone, from traders to festival goers, to hit the ground running.
“To pull all the operations in Peel Street together safety and sensibly on the Friday, the same day the festival starts, was always a big ask and something council hasn’t been satisfied with,” Mr Harley said.
There are also changes to the set up on Fitzroy Street, which will be closed on Wednesday.
“This year the Fan Zone will be located under a large 20-metre structure to give patrons more relief from the sun,” Mr Harley said.
“I think last year, because the Fitzroy mall was brand new, we were guilty of taking away too much of the natural flow by putting too many traders in there.
“This year we’ve moved most of them in to Peel Street, to make Fitzroy Street more of an arterial joiner between the Bicentennial Park precinct and the main street.”
The Peel Street layout has also undergone a makeover.
“We’re looking at revitalising Peel Street, and encouraging a different set up, particularly between Fitzroy and Brisbane streets,” Mr Harley said.
“We’re hoping to open it up a little more, to make it more navigable for patrons.
“Also, buskers will have more space, and that will lead to a more attractive precinct for visitors and locals alike to wonder through.”
Council has already begun the big job of setting up the main stage in Bicentennial Park.
“We’re setting up other infrastructure there too, so once those roads are closed, we can roll things in straight away,” Mr Harley said.