Tamworth Country Music Festival ‘Made People Homeless’ As New Date Pushes Motel Rates Up in April | The head of the daily newspaper in the North


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Preparations for the Tamworth Country Music Festival left more than a dozen people homeless, before the historic event was postponed Friday, according to local homelessness services. Meanwhile, motel guests are reporting price hikes of up to five times regular April hotel rates, just a day after new school vacation dates were announced. Tamworth Family Support Director Lynda Townsend said the organization was forced to tell a guest that his motel room would be needed for a festival guest last Tuesday because the stranger could pay more for the room. With nowhere to live, he now lives on the streets, she said. READ MORE: She blamed the “lack of available housing and social housing and the increase in the number of people in need of support as a direct impact of COVID”. “It’s not the motorists’ fault. They’ve always done what they did. Right now we have a major problem in the housing industry, period,” she said. Homelessness Services has long reported that a burning pandemic real estate market resulting in extremely low rental vacancy rates has forced more and more people out of the private real estate market. With public and crisis-packed accommodation options packed, about a dozen or more people are living in motels as a last-minute alternative to an average night’s sleep. Meanwhile, country musicians like Kirsty Lee Akers are already heating up over what she called a huge price hike in April. The multiple Golden Guitar Award winner and recent competitor to The Block managed to land a hotel room for a regular April price of around $ 1,200 immediately after the new dates were announced on Friday. Later that evening, a motelier asked him to withdraw his reservation, so that it could be resold for $ 6,834. “Artists always complain about the high price of housing during the festival. But we always hear that it’s summer school vacation, which is why it’s so expensive.” she said. “Going from $ 1,200 to $ 6,800 is just ridiculous.” She said many moteliers were offering rates to customers who had repeatedly changed reservations two or three years ago. “It was really tough for the hosting providers,” she said. Ms Townsend of Tamworth Family Support said they had done their best to develop a backup plan for their client, to no avail. “The real social worker who was supposed to have a conversation with her client, she was devastated,” she said. “She came to me as a manager and told me there must be something more we can do, what can we do? And then she spent probably an hour to two hours trying to find a place where she could put this person so that they are I don’t sleep on the streets. ” Ms Townsend estimated that there were “at least” 20 people who had been forced out of short-term crisis accommodation by the festival. Homes North general manager Maree McKenzie said many of their motel patrons were victims of domestic violence, lost their jobs or had been fired from a private lease. “Basically they don’t have options. If we think about being homeless, if we take a moment to think about it, no one wants to have nowhere to sleep and feel good, feel safe. and be able to take care of yourself, ”she said. Our reporters work hard to provide local and up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how you can continue to access our trusted content:



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