Forest festival a big success

JACKEYS Marsh Forest Festival was yesterday packed to the brim and teeming with activity as organisers were forced to turn away carloads of would-be revellers.

The four-day festival sold out of its 1000-ticket limit and is being hailed as a success by director Bridget Nicklason-King.

``People are just coming and coming and coming to the gate, we can't possibly fit another tent in the campsite or another person,'' Ms Nicklason-King said.

``It's really turning into being a beautiful festival.''

She said although they were tallying a string of positive results, including the biggest marketplace in the event's history, there were no plans to push an annual festival.

``We don't have any plans to make it an annual event at this stage, because of our environmentally sustainable goal,'' Ms Nicklason-King said.

``The land really needs to rest between festivals to recover, things at this point are really good for us.''

Festival site manager Rory Cadman said a celebration was held last night in recognition of the extended world heritage zoning of the Great Western Tiers.

``It is a culmination of 30 years campaigning, 1983 to July 2012, when the decision was made by UNESCO,'' Mr Cadman said.

``It will take the form of a ritual ceremony involving the local indigenous community, all the children in the area have been making lanterns and other things to parade about the festival.''

Ramornie sister duo Siskin River, North-West duo Halfway to Forth and Launceston's Thieves last night closed the festival's entertainment programme.

 A group of Give it Back representatives were on Saturday gathered at Meander in protest of the Western Tiers World Heritage listing.

Give it Back's Michael Hirst said their ``festival of common sense'' was held in contrast to the Forest Festival and aimed at highlighting the impact of forest conservation on the logging industry.

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