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e-Newsletter October 2016

Singapore gets a taste of the Margaret River region  


Singapore may be famous for a gin-based cocktail, but Margaret River wine was the drink on everyone's lips at a series of events in the South East Asian city-state last week.

It was all because of First Class in a Glass, a high-profile campaign organised by SWDC and the Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association to promote the Margaret River region in Singapore.

Residents of Singapore have until February 15 to share a 'selfie' or clip on social media of themselves enjoying Margaret River wine using the hashtag #margaretriverfirstclass for the chance to win prizes.

Pictured: SWDC Tradestart advisor Mat Lewis, Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association chief executive officer Pip Close and SWDC acting chief executive officer Anna Oades at Vasse Felix.


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Riding into the future  

Collie's beautiful natural environment means it is a great place to experience a range of outdoor activities.

So you can imagine how pleased we are help build on this strength by supporting the Shire of Collie's efforts to develop a mountain bike trail.

The Royalties for Regions grant allocated by us at SWDC will help to realise the trail, which will be situated close to the central business district.

Pictured: Collie Mountain Bike Club president Erik Mellegers and Andrew Dover from the Shire of Collie going over plans for a mountain bike trail in the town.

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Withers set to evolve  

The Bunbury suburb of Withers has changed for the better over the past few years. Now, it is set to evolve even further.

The City of Bunbury, SWDC and Housing Authority came together earlier today to sign a Memorandum of Understanding that focuses on urban renewal in the suburb.

The three organisations have devised a framework for the urban renewal of the neighbourhood through the Withers Local Area Plan.

Pictured: Paul Whyte from the Housing Authority, Anna Oades from SWDC, and Andrew Brien from the City of Bunbury.

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Supporting local business 

One of our aims at the South West Development Commission is to develop the region's economy.

With this in mind, we are supporting Business South West to run an upcoming course that aims to grow the potential of small businesses in the South West.

Pictured: Patrick Warrand from SWDC with Fiona Fitzgerald and Shannon Gale from Business South West.

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Coming soon to theatres  

Get out your 2017 calendar and circle March 2.

That's the date the film adaptation of the award-winning Craig Silvey novel Jasper Jones is scheduled for release in Australian cinemas.

Can't wait to then? Watch the recently released teaser trailer to satisfy your Jasper Jones cravings.

We're proud to have supported the filming of the movie in Pemberton and look forward to seeing it on the big screen.

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Ecotourism in spotlight 

With its striking landscapes and internationally-recognised biodiversity, the South West has a lot to share with visitors wanting to experience nature at its best.

An ecotourism forum scheduled for Bunbury on Thursday November 17 will bring into focus opportunities within the industry for locals.

Topics to be covered during the event include voluntourism, partnerships with the Department of Parks and Wildlife, and managing and promoting natural attractions.

Albert Teo from Borneo Eco Tours will be the keynote speaker at this SWDC-supported forum.

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A feast for the senses 

For a culinary cultural experience, attend Kambarang - South West Aboriginal Gourmet Experience on Saturday November 19.

Being held as part of this year's Margaret River Gourmet Escape, the event stars Aboriginal chef Mark Olive (pictured) and local tourism business operator Josh Whiteland.

Attendees will have the chance to feast on native bush flavours, and enjoy Noongar art and music.

The event will be supported by Aboriginal hospitality students from regional West Australian high schools.

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Strong communities  

Funding allocations we made in previous Royalties for Regions rounds continue to make a positive difference.

For example, a fit-for-purpose St John Ambulance sub-station opened in Boyanup earlier this month.

We are pleased the centre - and its fantastic volunteers - are now able to better serve the community.

Pictured: South West MLC Colin Holt, St John Ambulance Volunteer of the Year Kevin Williams, Boyanup vice chair Craig Bourne and SWDC board member Brian Piesse.

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Have your say  

Your opinion counts, so make sure you take up the chance to have your say about what it's like to live in regional Western Australia.

People have until Wednesday November 30 to complete the Living in the Regions survey.

Information obtained through the online questionnaire will be used to create a snapshot of the perceptions and experiences of living in WA's regions.

It's also anticipated the survey findings will be used to support decision-making and policy development.

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Helping hand  

We have someone we'd like to introduce you to - Mike Hendry.

As the South West's NBN advisor, Mike is available to provide a helping hand to local businesses and community organisations.

Mike's role is to provide impartial advice and information about transitioning to the National Broadband Network.

You can get in touch with Mike by email or by phoning 0473 976 389.

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WA on the global menu 

Western Australia, including the great South West of the state, has a lot to offer the world.

And now a new WA brand is helping to get the word out.

It's called Western Australia Worth Sharing, and already local producers have taken up the opportunity to get involved.

Pictured: Regional Development Minister Terry Redman at the South West launch of the brand.

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New board member  

We would like to welcome Pip Close to our board of management.

Pip is the chief executive officer at the Margaret River Busselton Tourism Association.

Her knowledge of business and the South West region, together with her experience, will be of great benefit to SWDC and the region.

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Spotlight on region  

We hosted a delegation from the Zhejiang Department of Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs last week.

The group was in the region to gain a better understanding of the sister city relationship between Bunbury and Jiaxing.

They were also on the lookout for potential future opportunities.

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