Major events push for Bunbury

Kate FieldingSouth Western Times

Event organisers have shown strong interest in Bunbury as an events destination, a capacity and capability assessment has revealed.

Bunbury City Council this week accepted the assessment from Sports Marketing Australia – a sporting event analyst organisation – and if endorsed in the budget will allocate more than $200,000 over three years to secure State, national and international events.

The multi-year financial commitment will allow chief executive officer Andrew Brien to secure the events.

While the council and Sports Marketing Australia remain tight-lipped about what events have been identified specifically, global action sports phenomenon Nitro Circus has been earmarked for 2018.

Mayor Gary Brennan said the assessment undertaken by an organisation which had “expertise across the nation” would benefit Bunbury into the future.

“We already have some wonderful assets and some high quality assets, now Sports Marketing Australia can target sporting groups and national bodies to hold events in Bunbury,” Mr Brennan said.

“I’m optimistic it will involve some great events coming to Bunbury which will not only benefit our city, but the entire region.”

He said the events would generate jobs and benefit accommodation, transport and hospitality services in the region.

The assessment identified the City of Bunbury Surf Life Saving, Bunbury Motorcycle, Koombana Bay Sailing and Bunbury BMX clubs along with Bunbury Volleyball and Indoor Beach Volleyball associations as having “high” event potential.

Other sporting clubs have been ranked as medium or low potential in the assessment.

In a report to the council, tourism, events and wildlife park acting manager Lucy Wiseman claims a national multi-year event could benefit the city economically to the tune of $2.4 million based on Tourism Research Australia calculations.

Mr Brennan said the allocation of $70,000 per year over three years for the events would complement the $60,000 the council also earmarked for the 2017-2020 City of Bunbury Events Strategy.

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