OBERON Tarana Heritage Railway Inc is constantly working towards the prospect of running a tourist train to Tarana.
As part of our discussions with the NSW Government for funding, the OTHR committee asked Oberon’s retailers to participate in a survey on what they thought the economic benefits of a tourist railway would be to Oberon.
The results were encouraging.
Of the surveys handed out, 69 per cent of businesses responded. The returned surveys covered a wide variety of local businesses, including commercial, clothing, cafes/takeaways, antiques, a museum, motels and caravan park, beauty and hair, gifts, food and mechanical businesses.
While OTHR was of the opinion that local businesses were supportive, it became apparent at the face-to-face dialogue that every business was enthusiastic to see the railway project up and running.
A number of questions were asked in the survey and the comments were outstanding, such as “tourist numbers would go through the roof” and “a huge benefit to the local area, population, and businesses and for tourism”.
With the results of the survey now clarified, it appears that there is the potential for the creation of at least 11 permanent jobs and 34 casual jobs initially.
OTHR forecasts an influx to start of about 8000 new tourists annually, which would increase over time.
What an exciting prospect for Oberon and district, and as OTHR negotiations for funding with the NSW Government move forward, it’s encouraging to know that we have the retail and hospitality community backing us up.