Hay run to help farms in firezone

THE Bathurst community is being urged to support a hay run for farmers in bushfire-ravaged areas north of the city.

FRIENDS IN DEED: Hay run organisers Brett Cranston, Steve Ellery, Councillor Bobby Bourke and James Walton at the drop-off point on Church Lane. Photo: CHRIS SEABROOK

FRIENDS IN DEED: Hay run organisers Brett Cranston, Steve Ellery, Councillor Bobby Bourke and James Walton at the drop-off point on Church Lane. Photo: CHRIS SEABROOK

James Walton from Bowyer and Livermore First National is the driving force behind Hay2Help and Brett Cranston from Cranston’s Transport Services has come on board to transport the hay to farmers in need.

Councillor Bobby Bourke, Steve Ellery and Steve Sharwood are also supporting the hay run and have organised a drop-off point for donations at 9 Church Lane, off River Road east of the river.

Mr Walton said supporting fire-affected farmers was just “the right thing to do”.

“The fires have burnt through over 125,000 acres around Dunedoo, Cassilis and Coolah and have taken feed, fences – everything,” he said.

“Even if they were to get rain there now it would be another six weeks before they had some feed for surviving stock.”

Whether it's one bale or 200, we will take what we can get.

Hay2Help organiser James Walton

Mr Walton said Hay2Help was looking for donations of hay in any size and shape bales.

“Drop-offs will be by appointment only to make sure we have someone there but as soon as we have enough for the first truckload we’ll send it up,” he said.

“It’s been a good hay season around Bathurst and while it’s drier now which is a concern heading into winter, we know there are people wanting to help.

“Whether it’s one bale or 200, we will take whatever we can get.”

Mr Cranston said he was ready to start sending trucks to the firezone as soon as they were loaded.

“I’m going to send a group text to all my drivers who are willing to donate their time so on the weekend we could send 20 trucks if we have enough hay,” he said.

“It all depends on getting as much hay as we can.”

People who are keen to support Hay2Help who do not have hay of their own can contact Mr Walton for the phone numbers of local farmers who are willing to sell them bales at generous prices to support the hay run.

For more information, contact Mr Walton on 6336 1585 or 0404 729 509, Mr Ellery on 0427 614 261, or Cr Bourke on 0416 207 370.