THE secret is out – regional cities are a great place to live.
Interest from capital-city families looking to make the tree change is at an all-time high, according to Evocities, a joint campaign by seven regional cities promoting country living.
In the first quarter of 2017/2018 alone, 67 households made the move from a capital city to an Evocity, while a further 109 families indicated they intend to move to an Evocity in the immediate future.
Trudie Myers made the move from Gosford to Tamworth in June, with her partner and young daughter. They used Evocities to research Tamworth before making the move.
Ms Myers didn’t hesitate to say her family’s lifestyle had improved since coming to Tamworth.
“The best thing is having time for family and essentially, slowing down,” she said.
“Tamworth is built for kids, so being able to get outside and introduce the kids to new stimulus is really great. There is also an obvious element of community spirit.
“Above all our lifestyle is a little slower paced and making the move has provided a better balance for our family.”
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Tamworth mayor Col Murray said there were “very talented people” among the tree changers and it was “making a big difference” to regional communities.
“These are professional people coming to town and they’re bringing with them some of the better aspects of cities,” Cr Murray said.
“Hopefully we see more of this exciting demographic coming to our city.”
Almost 500 inquiries were lodged with Evocities in the three-month period, which is the highest level of interest the initiative has received since the campaign launched in 2010. It comes off the back of a $300,000 grant from the NSW government, which was used for advertising in capital cities.
Evocities chair and Albury councillor Kevin Mack said the majority of enquiries were coming from Sydney, but there were also a large number from all major metropolitan centres including Melbourne and Brisbane.
“There’s even been international interest, which demonstrates the broad appeal of living in one of our regional cities,” Cr Mack said.
Since the campaign’s launch, Evocities has tracked more than 3100 households who have made the move to an Evocity, which includes Albury, Armidale, Bathurst, Dubbo, Orange and Wagga Wagga.