Australia Day ceremony moved to Town Hall due to air quality concerns

Young Town Hall. Photo: file
Young Town Hall. Photo: file

This year's Australia Day ceremony in Young has been moved from Carrington Park to the Town Hall.

The decision was made by the Hilltops Council Australia Day committee due to "unpredictable weather" and smoke haze from the state's bushfires.

Committee member and Hilltops councillor Greg Armstrong said due to the "exceptional circumstances" the decision was made to "move inside into a controlled environment".

"It was a decision made based on public health. There's been no small amount of concern about public health when it comes to air quality, sunlight and the like. The weather being as unpredictable as it's been and smoke being as predictable as it's been, a decision was made for this year only under exceptional circumstances to move inside into a controlled environment," Mr Armstrong said.

Cr Armstrong said it wasn't an easy decision.

He added that the Town Hall offers everything Carrington Park has.

"We have air conditioning, we have seating, we have all the things we have in the park. It's only for this year and it wasn't a decision that was made lightly. It was made simply because the effect of smoke on members of the community," he said.

"If there's no smoke and it's not hot, then I guess we probably acted in a prudent manner. No one has suffered from that. Next year hopefully there's no fires and we can head back to the park again."

Air quality for the South West Slopes was the best in the state on Tuesday afternoon rated between 15 and 18 which is listed as "very good" on NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) website.

"No health impacts are expected when air quality is in this range," the DPIE states.

The Bureau of Meteorology forecast for Australia Day in Young is sunny with a top 35 degrees.

Wombat, Harden and Boorowa ceremonies are scheduled to take place outdoors.

The Rotary Big Breakfast begins Young's Australia Day activities from 8am followed by the ceremony at 9am.

Three members of the community are confirmed to make the pledge to become Australian citizens, ambassador George Ellis will speak, and Australia Day awards, including Citizen of the Year, will be presented.

The Young Town Band will provide entertainment.

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