Transport, tourism could help save villages.


DEMOGRAPHER Bernard Salt's data shows villages on the Northern Rivers are suffering a long, drawn-out decline and are in urgent need of attention.

As residents of the Northern Rivers, we asked you what you believed could save our small towns and villages.

Tre Artie said there was the option to invest in tourism and utilise rates properly.

Anthony Ross agreed, saying: "Better roads, better use of our rates, instead of just increasing them.

"Less placating of minority issues and more focus on the majority of the population's concerns."

Tre Artie suggested villages could create tourist attractions in order to keep people visiting the town, such as a giant macadamia nut for somewhere such as Clunes.

Peter Hatfield agreed, saying: "The fast-paced world drives through Clunes every day to the tune of tens-of-thousands-of cars.

"Perhaps some residents of small places like Clunes will appreciate slower-paced visitors who stop and enjoy the villages, and bring work and income to them. That is the experience in the Brisbane Valley."

Angie Burgler said some towns along the railway line had declined ever since it closed.

"I say bring back the trains and improve the public transport system," she said.

"Could relieve the roads, too, but some councils want to rip-up the rails."

Wilbury Smith agreed the existing railway network needed utilising, and suggested a "sun-powered train" be put on the tracks and "get a tourist trail happening".

Kirstin Paterson suggested public...

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