Rock the Gate, a mass rally and anti-CSG concert is set to go ahead on Saturday 12 May at Riverside Park, Lismore, after being given the nod by Lismore City Council on Friday.
Organisers are anticipating the rally could attract up to 10,000 people, making it one of the biggest public demonstrations ever held in the Northern Rivers.
The event, planned by newly formed Lismore group CSG Free Lismore, is expected to draw crowds from across northern NSW and will feature music by Dubmarine, OKA and Round Mountain Girls, among others.
Rally organiser Elly Bird said ‘… what started as a rally with a few musicians has quickly evolved into a mini Woodford’.
‘The support for this event from local business and local community is humbling and inspiring – everyone wants to help.’ she added.
There will be full lineup of musicians spread over two stages, all of whom have given their time free in solidarity with the anti-CSG movement. Speakers include Drew Hutton from Lock the Gate, Marion Lloyd Smith from the National Toxic Network, Greens MP Jeremy Buckingham, and Rob Quirk from the Tweed Cane Growers Association.
There will also be food vans, information stalls about CSG, representatives from anti-gas groups, renewable-energy options and sustainable practice, plus children’s events, such as face painting, jumping castle and circus activities.
Media spokesperson for CSG Free Lismore John McPherson said, ‘more than 20 anti-CSG organisations from across the northern quarter of the state have already confirmed that they will be attending, including those from the Tweed in the north, Grafton and Coffs Harbour in the south, plus Drake and Tenterfield in the west’.
‘A similar rally in Sydney on May 1 is being supported by the Farmers Federation and the CWA,’ McPherson added.
Reflecting on the strong community opposition to the unconventional gas-mining industry, McPherson noted, ‘The whole-of-community support for the Lock the Gate/CSG Free movement is quite astonishing, with farmers, office workers, academics and social reformers all standing side by side on this issue.’