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e-Newsletter November 2014

Producing super outcomes 

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Augusta-Margaret River Shire president Mike Smart and SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks on Margaret River's main street.

You only have to visit Collie, Manjimup and Margaret River to see just how much of an affect the SuperTowns program has had on these places.

For starters, the recently-upgraded Surfers Point is now a world-class venue. Collie is benefiting from a new-look town centre. And Manjimup is enjoying a growing reputation as a food bowl and culinary tourism destination.

We're pleased to report people can expect even more success stories to come as the SuperTowns program continues.

For example, Margaret River is set to become even more appealing to tourists and locals when the southern leg of the perimeter road is built for the purpose of allowing trucks to be rerouted away from the town centre.

Pre-construction works commenced on Tuesday November 11 and construction works are expected to commence in the first week of December.

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Animation fixation 

Hollywood, New York…Bunbury?

There's been a buzz about Bunbury's potential as a future film capital lately.

And it's all because of the signing of an agreement to facilitate the building of the state's largest movie animation and film studios in the city.

We'll be working with joint venture partners Vue Group and Shanghai Hippo Animation, as well as the City of Bunbury, to help turn the plan into reality.

Pictured: Vue Group managing director Alan Lindsay, SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks and Shanghai Hippo Animation chief executive officer Kerr Xu at the signing ceremony.

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Vue Group managing director Alan Lindsay, SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks and Shanghai Hippo Animation chief executive officer Kerr Xu at the signing ceremony.

Vue Group managing director Alan Lindsay, SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks and Shanghai Hippo Animation chief executive officer Kerr Xu at the signing ceremony.

Young achievers 

We're big believers in the capacity of the region's young people to achieve great things.

So we were inspired when hearing about the accomplishments of local teenagers at this year's South West Academy of Sport awards night.

The award winners are not only champions in the sporting arena, but also positive role models for other teenagers in the region.

Pictured: Sport and Recreation Minister Terry Waldron congratulating surfing prodigy Jacob Willcox on becoming the academy's first back-to-back Sports Star of the Year.

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Sport and Recreation Minister Terry Waldron congratulating surfing prodigy Jacob Willcox on becoming the academy’s first back-to-back Sports Star of the Year.

Sport and Recreation Minister Terry Waldron congratulating surfing prodigy Jacob Willcox on becoming the academy’s first back-to-back Sports Star of the Year.

Apply now for Royalties for Regions grants 

If you have a community project in need of a financial boost, don't forget to apply to us for funding through the Community Chest Fund by 4.30pm today.

Through the Royalties for Regions-backed Fund, grants up to and including $20,000 are available for local projects in the South West.

For bigger projects requiring a larger helping hand, people are encouraged to apply to the Regional Grants Scheme for grants between $20,001 and $300,000.

Applications to the Scheme are due by 4.30pm on Thursday December 11.

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Boost for marine facilities plan 

Plans to improve Bunbury's marine facilities and create a marina have received a boost.

The State Government has allocated $1million in Royalties for Regions funding towards completing the environmental studies needed for the project to move into the next phase.

The analysis will build on previous studies done by government departments over recent years, with work coordinated by us at SWDC.

Concept plans for enhancing marine facilities were developed by the Bunbury Marine Facilities Steering Committee and released for public feedback earlier this year.

The committee is chaired by Bunbury MLA John Castrilli and includes representatives from SWDC, Southern Ports Authority, Bunbury Marine Facilities Alliance, City of Bunbury, Landcorp, Department of Transport and Department of Lands.

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Concept plans for enhancing marine facilities were developed by the Bunbury Marine Facilities Steering Committee and released for public feedback earlier this year.

Concept plans for enhancing marine facilities were developed by the Bunbury Marine Facilities Steering Committee and released for public feedback earlier this year.

New era in tourism cruises in 

We were honoured to be part of the group which officially welcomed the Diamond Princess on its maiden visit to Busselton yesterday.

The arrival of the luxury vessel marked the first official visit by a cruise ship to the city.

As part of our efforts to ensure passengers received a warm welcome, we provided funding to the Geographe Bay Tourism Association towards maps that were handed out to passengers.

We will also continue to work on marketing the region - Augusta, Bunbury and Busselton - to cruise ship companies through the SWDC-chaired Cruise South West committee.

Congratulations to all of those that were involved in the visit, especially all the volunteers that assisted in welcoming the tourists.

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Collie’s park plans 

Collie is continuing its transformation into a SuperTown.

And as you can see in the above artist's impression, the planned Central Park is going to be another winner for the town.

The first stage of the park will include a water playground, which is sure to be a hit with Collie's younger residents.

Stage two will be more adult-focused and will be implemented when the new child care centre is built and the existing centre demolished.

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Artist’s impression of the planned Central Park in Collie.

Artist’s impression of the planned Central Park in Collie.

Film frenzy 

Did you know that popular novel Jasper Jones will be turned into a movie - and it will be filmed in the South West?

It's the latest in a growing list of features that have either been filmed in the region or will be filmed in the region in the future.

Since we teamed up with Royalties for Regions to provide funding towards Drift being shot in the South West, an increasing number of filmmakers are looking at the region as a filming location.

Pictured: Scenes for Drift being filmed in Gracetown in 2011.

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Scenes for Drift being filmed in Gracetown in 2011.

Scenes for Drift being filmed in Gracetown in 2011.

New boat harbour open for business 

It's official: The Royalties for Regions-funded Augusta Boat Harbour is open for business.

The $36.47million facility was launched by Premier Colin Barnett and Regional Development Minister Terry Redman last Friday November 21.

The harbour, which includes floating finger jetties and 40 boat pens, provides a much-needed safe haven for vessels navigating the coastline between Albany and Busselton.

Pictured: Augusta-Margaret River shire president Mike Smart, Regional Development Minister Terry Redman and SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks at the opening.

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Augusta-Margaret River shire president Mike Smart, Regional Development Minister Terry Redman and SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks at the opening.

Augusta-Margaret River shire president Mike Smart, Regional Development Minister Terry Redman and SWDC chairman Stuart Hicks at the opening.

Safer suburb 

We're pleased to report that the Bunbury suburb of Withers now has an extra pair of eyes to help fight crime.

As a result of efforts by the City of Bunbury and SWDC, a closed-circuit TV system has been switched on in the neighbourhood.

The wireless camera network is part of efforts to improve the area, which has benefited from a number of initiatives in recent times.

Pictured: John Kowal from the City of Bunbury demonstrating how the cameras zoom in and out, as well as pan across.

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John Kowal from the City of Bunbury demonstrating how the cameras zoom in and out, as well as pan across.

John Kowal from the City of Bunbury demonstrating how the cameras zoom in and out, as well as pan across.

New group steps out 

A new group in Withers is giving parents the opportunity to walk not only for fitness, but for fun and friendship as well.

Each Monday at 9am, parents and their children can meet at the Withers Community Library and then take a stroll together around the neighbourhood.

The Let's Get Moving group is a partnership between SWDC, Investing in Our Youth and the Child and Parent Centre.

Pictured: Narelle Cowlishaw, Pam Macnish and Shona Lever.

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Narelle Cowlishaw, Pam Macnish and Shona Lever.

Narelle Cowlishaw, Pam Macnish and Shona Lever.

Donnybrook flavour to weekend 

We're always delighted to support events that bring people together and add vibrancy to our communities.

And it's for this reason we're sponsoring the Donnybrook Food and Wine Fest that's taking place between 11am and 5.30pm tomorrow at the Donnybrook Amphitheatre.

A highlight of the event is sure to be former West Coast Eagles player Andrew Embley's cooking demonstrations.

For a full program, visit the event's website.

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Former West Coast Eagles player Andrew Embley.

Former West Coast Eagles player Andrew Embley.

Paddock to plate and on the page 

Looking for a Christmas present for that foodie friend or family member of yours?

Stop searching! We've found the perfect gift - it's a new book called Food of the Southern Forests.

Written by Sophie Zalokar and photographed by Craig Kinder, the book explores the food and people of the Southern Forests.

The book, which features 40 producers, benefited from financial support from the Southern Forests Food Council.

The SFFC is funded by Royalties for Regions through the SuperTowns program.

Pictured: SFFC's Nicole Giblett, photographer Craig Kinder, author and chef Sophie Zalokar, and Bevan Eatts from SFFC with the book.

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Southern Forests Food Council's Nicole Giblett, photographer Craig Kinder, author and chef Sophie Zalokar, and Bevan Eatts from SFFC.

Southern Forests Food Council's Nicole Giblett, photographer Craig Kinder, author and chef Sophie Zalokar, and Bevan Eatts from SFFC.

Gourmet temptations 

Foodies were able to tuck into a feast of bush flavours at the Kambarang event that was held as part of this year's Margaret River Gourmet Escape.

The SWDC-sponsored lunch saw celebrity chef Mark Olive and Koomal Dreaming's Josh Whiteland lead local culinary talents in putting together a showcase of local produce.

Linked to this, we hosted a group of representatives from Wine Australia and also buyers from Indonesia and Vietnam on a tour of the region.

As well as attending the high-profile festival including Kambarang, delegates also had the opportunity to visit wineries, participate in tastings and attend a dinner aimed at highlighting the region's wine and produce.

Pictured in the lead-up to the Gourmet Escape are Jackson Hill, Terrilee Collard, Mark Olive and Marian Davis at Roelands Village practicing for the lunch.

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Jackson Hill, Terrilee Collard, Mark Olive and Marian Davis at Roelands Village practicing for the lunch.

Jackson Hill, Terrilee Collard, Mark Olive and Marian Davis at Roelands Village practicing for the lunch.