Central Victorian societies to receive agricultural grants 

EIGHT agricultural and pastoral societies across the Bendigo region have received state government grants. 

Societies in Bendigo, Castlemaine, Charlton, Donald, Elmore, Heathcote, Kerang and Rochester have all received grants of up to $10,000 to help develop and upgrade showground facilities. 

The funding is part of the Victorian Government’s 2012-2013 Agricultural and Pastoral Society Grants Program. 

The Elmore and Machinery Field Days received $10,000, which will go towards upgrading electrical facilities at the event ground. 

Elmore Field Days public relations officer Sam Chotton said the electrical upgrade was expensive and the grant would help complete the project.

“In one way it [the grant] allows us to continue with the upgrading of the electrical facilities at the ground while we put our own money towards other improvements that do not attract grants,” she said. “The grant will help us maintain our equipment and keep it up to date and assist us in helping attract other events to the area.

“That in turn brings cash in to the local town, which is great for businesses.”

The Bendigo Agricultural Society got a $9950 grant, which will be used to develop a wash-down facility at the livestock exhibition centre.

Bendigo Agricultural Society secretary and Victorian Agricultural Society Limited chairman Rod Bowles said he was delighted with the state government’s commitment in supporting show societies in the Bendigo region.

He said the wash-down facility would be important showgrounds infrastructure and benefit all involved in events at the grounds this year.

Castlemaine ($5704) and Kerang ($8043) will use their respective grants to undergo power upgrades while Charlton will repair spectator stands with a $6298 grant.

Heathcote will upgrade its toilets with a $2550 grant, Rochester will put a $2200 grant towards a loading ramp and Donald will put $10,000 towards a pavilion upgrade.

“It is fantastic to see the government assisting various societies across the region to create, repair, develop and maintain facilities,” he said.

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