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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 12 Hansard (13 November) . . Page.. 3544 ..

MR PRATT (continuing):

It is pleasing to see government departments so supportive, and we trust this support will continue.

When it comes to youth, the festival provides the badly needed entertainment that youth in the Tuggeranong Valley are screaming out for. I hope the festival generates ideas and inspires further action for the design and development of perennial youth entertainment activities in the valley. We certainly need a lot of those and we-the community-have to find ways to do that.

I feel that the festival is an interesting test bed. Concepts can be tried and tested, and our youth are able to provide feedback to tell us what they think. That is an ACT-wide issue, but I would like to see the festival being able to contribute to the development of useful and entertaining activities for the youth of Tuggeranong Valley.

There has already been a lot said here today, and I do not need to rehash all of those points. I am very happy that the festival has progressed this year-and hopefully augers well for the future.

MR HARGREAVES (4.08), in reply: Mr Speaker, it always gives me huge pleasure to talk about Tuggeranong. I will refer to a couple of points that were raised. Before doing so, I thank members for their support for the motion and for their kind words about the festival and its organisers. In one of the years that the Tuggeranong festival did not get any money, there was, I believe, some $10,000 allocated from the public purse for a similar festival in Belconnen. However, due to lack of interest in Belconnen, it never happened.

I would urge the good burghers of Belconnen to take a leaf out of the book of the people of Tuggeranong and get their community spirit together. They would be surprised at just what can come out of it.

Ms Dundas was talking about the need for an arts centre in Belconnen. I have certainly been to some shows in Belconnen and I agree with Ms Dundas-they could do with one. However, they do not just pop up-you must have a community that will use it. The festival in Tuggeranong was many years in the making. It was that groundswell of community support that delivered it. It was also that groundswell of community support that pushed members of this place to fund it.

Ms Tucker said that the festivals all sort of popped up accidentally and that they are now being driven by people born and raised in the ACT. In fact, it has been through the efforts of a few dedicated people, but it has been on the insistence of the community at large that the festival has continued. It is true that we now have many people who were born in the area insisting on it-and that shows the dynamic of Tuggeranong. Once upon a time, it was nappy valley, but not any more. We are now seeing the community in the Tuggeranong Valley being driven by young adults, who were born in a hospital that has been blown up and have grown up in Tuggeranong. Those people are pushing these things.

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