$150,000 is being shared amongst 10 successful projects aimed at activating key suburban business precincts in Hamilton, New Lambton and Wallsend, including an innovative self-guided op shop trail, vertical “smart” gardens installed on shopfront facades, and a series of community-based art initiatives.
Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the Special Business Rate (SBR) program was integral in bringing people back to business precincts across the city following the impacts felt in recent years from the pandemic.
“Our latest suburban SBR round is set to see beautification in New Lambton, a fringe festival on Beaumont Street, and a fantastic initiative that supports sustainability by promoting shopping at Wallsend’s eclectic op-shops among other great local projects”, Cr Nelmes said.
“We’ll see some exciting new activations like the Curious Legends Halloween celebration Wallsend Frights which will activate Nelson Street with live performance and interactive activities, while New Lambton Library is set to receive a stunning new mural delivered by Up & Up, drawing inspiration from the ideas of the local community”.
Bianca Bartlett, co-founder of the Purple Card Project, said SBR suburban funding will help bring her Op Shop Trail concept to life by tapping into an increased interest in slow fashion and shopping sustainably.
“With SBR funding, in collaboration with the Wallsend Town Business Association, we are developing a self-guided digital trail map that shines a spotlight on Nelson Street’s unique and diverse mix of op-op shops and cafes all in one convenient location,” Ms Bartlett said.
“The trail concept is designed to encourage visitors to spend time and money in the precinct on weekends, when op-shops are usually closed, starting with coffee at a local café, visiting all five op shops brimming with unique wares, and concluding with lunch.”
Wallsend’s business precinct is also set to benefit this Halloween with Curious Legends awarded SBR funding to run Wallsend Frights: a two-day program of family-friendly events on Nelson Street featuring live roving performances, costume-making challenges, installations, interactive activities, and workshops.