by Noreen Boehm

Gunnedah Racecourse was a hive of activity as Boggabri Coal at Idemitsu hosted their Christmas party for employees and their families.

“This is the best Christmas party for six years, beautiful surroundings, plenty of shade and food, a large variety of activities for the children, love the live music, and the food, wow,” was how numerous people described the event.

Ben Hiatt, general manager Boggabri Coal at Idemitsu Australia Pty Ltd, said his aim was to continue to integrate the coal mining family and the community family.

“We draw our workforce from numerous communities, we live and work in these communities and these communities support us and we aim to support them.”

Integrating Boggabri, Narrabri, Gunnedah, Tamworth, Manilla and Wee Waa services and all areas in between has been a logistical exercise that has taken a lot of planning.

While adults sat back, relaxed and caught up with co-workers and met new friends, children were able to have their face painted, pony rides, and jumping castles.

Over two days more than 700 people attended the Christmas parties.

All children aged from zero to 16 received a present from Santa.

Parents said they were asked to submit their child’s name, age and their interests and on the day their child received an appropriate gift.

Mr Hiatt said all the gifts were sourced from Narrabri, with food vendors and activities from Boggabri, Gunnedah, Wee Waa, Manilla and Tamworth.

“Management is very appreciative of the large site wide support,” said Mr Hiatt.

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