Following the Santos of Festival of Rugby’s successful launch in Narrabri in 2021, Narrabri Shire mayor Ron Campbell is hopeful the event will prove a record-breaking success when it returns to the shire this month.

During the midst of the COVID pandemic, organisers pulled the debut festival together in a relatively short period of time. 

Despite the challenges at the time, the inaugural Narrabri festival proved a tremendous success.

“I remember people saying in 2021 they experienced record sales,” Cr Campbell said.

“This year, all the shop fronts can take the opportunity of the amount of people who will be in the shire. 

“Our accommodation, restaurants and pubs will be booked out.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if records are broken again.”

Cr Campbell spoke about his hopes for a successful festival at Dangar Park while construction activity on grandstand seating was underway.

The mayor was joined by Narrabri Rugby Club president Mick Coffey, and both are ready to welcome festival-goers in Narrabri’s true friendly style.

“This is a very well anticipated event that brings the community together,” Cr Campbell said.

“This event showcases Narrabri Shire for the whole world to see which is a wonderful thing.

“You can’t buy that sort of advertising for our shire. It’s invaluable.

“We’re in the midst of a time where we are trying to encourage people to move to the shire and fill the spaces we have in the workforce.”

Cr Campbell said the Festival of Rugby had also brought opportunities for the shire through investments made at Dangar Park, including upgraded lighting.

“Combined with the rugby club which is looking to make extensions to the clubhouse, we can look to the future in regards to other events held here – big events that can encompass Gately Field and the tennis and netball courts,” he said.

“Our vision is to have a big sporting complex here as part of a sporting precinct.”

Cr Campbell described the festival as an exciting event which was being held during an exciting time in the shire.

“People are excited about the Festival of Rugby.

“Santos, the rugby club, the Waratahs, the Reds and council have worked closely together to pull this event off.

“That’s evidenced by the fact that the grandstands are going up now, things are happening at Dangar Park and the oval is looking fantastic.

“We will see a fantastic event that will benefit the whole of the Narrabri Shire as well as the broader region.”

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