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Australia Day ambassadors announced

Paralympics gold medallist Tiffany Thomas Kane and Australia’s ‘voice of rugby’, Gordon Bray, have been confirmed as the Armidale region’s Australia Day Ambassadors for 2019.

Tiffany will be a guest and speaker at Australia Day activities in Armidale on Saturday 26 January, while Gordon will attend and speak at events in Guyra, Tingha and Ben Lomond on 25 and 26 January.

Tiffany is a world record holder who bagged four medals at the 2015 Paralympics World Championships. The 17-year-old, who has the condition hypochondraplasia, also claimed four medals at the Rio Paralympic Games, where she set a world record on her way to winning gold in the 100m breaststroke.

In between her rigorous training regime preparing for this year’s world swimming championships, the Sydney-based competitor rides showjumping with her pony Minnie.

Gordon is a Member of the Order of Australia for services to sports broadcasting and rugby union, and in 2000 he was awarded a Prime Minister’s Sports Medal.

His career as a commentator began with ABC Sport in 1969, which initially took him to Tasmania to cover Australian Rules football.

In 1976, he paid his fare to France with the Wallabies and called both rugby internationals live to Australia on ABC Radio. When ABC colleague Norman May retired from TV rugby commentary in 1980, Gordon stepped into the role and became known as Australia’s ‘Voice of Rugby’,  calling around 450 test matches.

He has also covered 10 Olympic Games, starting in 1976 when he was the youngest member of the combined Australian television team. He called the yachting regatta for radio and television and at the start of the Games presented the first live colour sports transmission to Australia.

Armidale Regional Council Mayor Simon Murray said the Ambassadors’ personal stories and insights would be a wonderful addition to the series of Australia Day events happening over a period of four days.

“Both have achieved remarkable things in the sporting world and their presentations at our local ceremonies will certainly be a highlight,” Councillor Murray said.

A busy schedule of events throughout the region means there will not be community activities in Armidale’s Curtis and Civic Park this year.

2019 Australia Day events in the Armidale region

Friday 25 January - Guyra Awards Dinner

6.30pm, Guyra Bowling and Recreation Club

Tickets: Adults - $25

Children under 12 - $15

Available at Council’s Guyra Chambers until 4.00pm on Friday, 18 January, 2019

Saturday 26 January - Breakfast at Ben Lomond

7am, Ben Lomond Memorial Hall

Saturday 26 January - Armidale Official Australia Day Awards and Citizenship Ceremony

10am, Central Park

Saturday 26 January - Guyra Flag Raising Ceremony

11am, Rotary Park Guyra on the New England Highway

Saturday 26 January - Tingha Family BBQ 

6.30pm, Tingha Sport and Recreation Grounds

Movie in the Park at dusk (Sherlock Gnomes) followed by fireworks display by Holysmoke

Monday 28 January – Guyra BYO Family Picnic

BYO family picnic followed by Movie in the Park (Sherlock Gnomes) at dusk, finishing with a fireworks display by Holysmoke

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