New England High Country Councils win at Northern Inland Innovation Awards.

New England High Country Councils have taken a win for the Retail, Tourism and Leisure category at the Northern Inland Innovation Awards, held in Inverell last week.

Team effort: Glen Innes Mayor Steve Toms, Harry Bolton, Elissia Goldman, Katrina George, Susie Crawford, Mary Hollingworth, Tony Broomfield, Rechelle Leahy, Uralla Mayor Michael Pearce and Inverell Mayor Paul Harmon (front).

Team effort: Glen Innes Mayor Steve Toms, Harry Bolton, Elissia Goldman, Katrina George, Susie Crawford, Mary Hollingworth, Tony Broomfield, Rechelle Leahy, Uralla Mayor Michael Pearce and Inverell Mayor Paul Harmon (front).

Uralla Shire mayor Michael Pearce said the award was a testament to how well all Councils were able to work together and encourage tourists to the whole region.

“All the different towns have their own attractions but it just goes to show what we can do with collaboration … jumping on board together, in the same boat and all rowing in the same direction,” Mr Pearce said.

Regional Development Australia Northern Inland chair Russel Stewart said he was “stunned” by the amazing work being done right across the region.

“Every year we discover new stories of innovation in this region,” Mr Stewart said.

Glen Innes mayor Steve Toms was also impressed with the achievements.

“It was great to be part of the winning team of New England High Country Councils,” Mr Toms said.

“The focus was on the My Favourite Corner motorbike promotions.

“It’s a promotion to encourage motorbike riders to the New England high country.

“Certainly Glen Innes has received a big benefit from that [promotion] in attracting a significant number of visitors to the area.”

The gala awards dinner was held at the Inverell RSM Club on Friday night, attracting 125 attendees and a diverse range of businesses and organisations, including seven Councils from across the region.

The Uralla Shire Council were finalists in the University of New England Professional and Government Services category with Tamworth Regional Council taking out the win.

Z-Net from Uralla and HealthWise New England North West were runners up in the White Rock Wind Farm Research and Education category.

A highly commended award went to the TAFE NSW Transport and Logistics Industry Liaison Unit.

The evening also featured Nationals Senator John Williams presenting the Community Contribution Award to the Namoi Country Women’s Association.

The 2015 Innovation of the Year Winner Jacqueline Donoghue from Lively Linseed was guest speaker.

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