The inaugural Hunter Mining Show, the launch event for the Hunter Coal Festival, is looking to greater community and resources engagement in the region.
The show, held from March 12 to 14 in Singleton, “has been specifically designed to engage not only the industry – through displays from local, national and international suppliers of products and services – but also to involve the entire community, an event spokesperson said.
The event is set to incorporate trade displays, demonstrations of mining equipment and technology, information sessions and workshops, and networking events, culminating in the Hunter Coal Festival Community day on the 14th.
The show was developed by the Singleton Business Chamber, which is running the festival in conjunction with Singleton and Muswellbrook Councils, Hunter Valley mining companies, local community groups and regional businesses.
The Coal Festival itself will feature 75 suppliers of products and services.
“The Show will offer a new way for mining suppliers to engage with their customers – both existing and potential – as well has highlighting their offerings and capabilities to the broader community,” Festival chair Peter Eason said.
“We’ve really designed the Show – and indeed the entire Festival concept – as a way to promote understanding not only across the industry, but also dialogue and communications between mining and other industry sectors.”
As part of the community events, it will host a coal-and-spoon race.
The Coal Festival will also host a series of workshops, with a focus on health and safety.
“We are delighted to announce that Brant Webb, one of the survivors of the Beaconsfield Mine tragedy in 2006, will be participating in the Hunter Mining Show,” Eason said.
“He’ll be in the region a few days before the show starts, talking to mines, community groups and schools about his experiences and the importance of safety – and then will be making a number of presentations during the show.”
Webb will be presneting with Coal Services Mines Rescue Regional Manager David Connel.
Eason went on to state: “We want to send a message back to the decision-makers that a lot of media coverage about coal is to the negative – but there is an awful lot of strong community support for the mining industry in the Hunter Valley”.
“However, coal is just one of a number of very valuable economic contributors within our region.
“One thing we don’t want to do is promote this industry’s growth at the expense of other industries
“We want to send a message of cohabitation; we want to change conditions and perceptions, so we can all work and live together successfully in the same region.
“The mining industry is extremely generous and more than that, it is an integral element within the community. So the festival represents a big thank you to the mining for its participation and contribution over many many decades,” he said.