Life membership for Julie Gittoes

The Lamb and Potato Festival Committee, l to r: Mark Werts, Vicki Bell, Chris Bell, Steve Mepham, Bertha Reeves, Julie Gittoes, Geoff Reeves, Gwyneth Pearson and Ian Russell
17th Jan 2023

Julie Gittoes was presented with life membership of the Guyra Lamb and Potato Festival committee on the opening night of the 2023 Festival. Julie’s involvement with the festival goes back 34 years, 32 of which has been as the main organiser of the food gazebo.
The presentation was made by three people who she has worked closely with for much of that time – Bertha and Geoff Reeves and Gwyneth Pearson.
Each year Julie coordinates more than 30 different volunteer groups, with up to 20 different people per shift. Thanking the committee for the honour Julie said that every day that she has turned up is because she wanted to be there.
“To be honoured is special, because I get to work with wonderful people like Bertha, Geoff and Gwyneth and the wonderful groups of volunteers who turn up to help,” Julie said.
“I also get to catch up with the extended Lamb & Potato Family including all the wonderful stall holders who come back every year.”
The presentation and official opening by Armidale Regional Council Mayor Sam Coupland took place in the new music pavillion which was being used for the first time at this year’s festival.
Built with a $130,000 State Government Community Building Partnership grant, the new dining and performance space has been welcomed by organisers and visitors to the festival.
President of the Lamb and Potato committee Steve Mepham thanked ARC for their involvement in getting the building up and running.
“We had to jump through a few hurdles to get it built, but how great is this building?” Steve said. “The festival has a rich history and now we have somewhere to document how it has unfolded over the last 37 years.
“The photos on the walls bring that history to life and this has been made possible thanks to a grant from Australia Post and the Guyra Historical Society.”