The New England- based Fleece to Fashion awards have been cancelled for the second year in a row due to difficulties associated with the COVID-19 pandemic
The 2021 Fleece to Fashion Awards Gala event was due to be held at the iconic Deeargee Woolshed near Uralla, NSW, in September but was postponed to November as case numbers began to surge in July and now has been cancelled entirely for 2021.
Fleece to Fashion chairman Lachlan Fulloon of Cressbrook Merinos Armidale said the board had taken the difficult decision to cancel the event due to the uncertainty borne out of current COVID-19 restrictions.
"Our gala event seeks to bring together several hundred patrons from all over the country to celebrate the compelling story of Australian merino wool production and its esteemed presence within the top fashion and textile manufacturing capitals across the world - this is no easy feat during a global pandemic," Mr Fulloon said.
"We had hoped that by this stage in the year, the COVID-19 restrictions may have relaxed somewhat, allowing events like ours to proceed in a normal fashion, however this is simply not the case.
"We believe the right thing to do is to refocus our attention on the 2022 awards and look to hold a most impressive celebration of wool fashion here in the New England, when guests, sponsors, entrants, and the wider agricultural and wool fashion community can gather in person as we had always intended."
Mr Fulloon said there had been a great deal of enthusiasm about Fleece to Fashion's proposed black-tie gala 'night of nights' in the famous Deeargee Woolshed, which will remain a drawcard for next year's awards.
"The Covid-19 pandemic has proven just how important events like ours are for regional tourism, bringing visitors to the beautiful New England and promoting what is on offer here," he said.
"As wool producers, to encourage demand for our wonderful product, wool fashion events are so important to promote the many facets of wool as a fibre to work with. "
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