Cittaslow Katoomba Blue Mountains


Seeking Endorsement

Blue Mountains Seeks Endorsement

Saturday, 20 January 2007

In an exciting move which will enhance the region's status as a UNESCO World Heritage Area and one of Australia 's top tourist destinations, the City of the Blue Mountains is seeking endorsement as a Cittaslow . Cittaslow (literally 'Slow City', pronounced CHITTA-slow) is an extension of the worldwide Slow Food movement, which the Mountains officially became part of in 2004 (see photos of recent Slow Food events here).

Cittaslow is not just about food. Its aims are much wider, and are based on taking time to identify what is important and special about a region and putting in place strategies to preserve its unique qualities. It brings great benefits for the local economy, the environment, tourism, and local residents' quality of life, and helps to further define the point of difference from other regions.

Graham Kidd, Mayor of Ludlow, the UK 's first Slow City , has said:

"The real benefit of Cittaslow for Ludlow is the way that it provides a 'hook' to hang things on. It is a mindset that encourages us to work with people and organisations towards a common aim: improving our score against a set of Cittaslow goals, nearly all of which aim to improve the quality of life for everyone in our town. It has helped join up thinking' and doing' in the town".

In the Mountains, the visiting Cittaslow delegation will experience the magnificent natural environment, the diverse cafes and restaurants, artisan bakeries and other small businesses, the vibrant arts community and unique domestic architecture, and will meet some small local producers, all of which are likely to be factors in deciding on the Mountains' eligibility.

Spokesperson for the Mountains group, Anne Elliott, says: "We see this as a fantastic opportunity to reinvigorate the area - by working with the Mountains community to develop new ideas and projects for the benefit of everyone, particularly young people, local business, and the environment".

Further Information: Paul Payten, Convenor Cittaslow Katoomba Blue Mountains

Phone:0414 705 958 or

Background - Cittaslow

The much-touted Global Village may have created unparalleled opportunities for the exchange of goods and ideas, but it can also lead to the proliferation of uniformity that stifles individuality and creativity at the local level.

In a Cittaslow, the community chooses to:

  • implement an environmental policy which nurtures the distinctive features of that town or city and its surrounding
  • area, and focuses on recycling and recovery.
  • put in place an infrastructure with an emphasis on environmentally-friendly use of land
  • preserve the history of a region, the important buildings and historical locations and make sure they are identified, protected and maintained
  • encourage the use of technology that will improve the quality of air and life in the city
  • support the production and consumption of organic foodstuffs
  • promote use of local produce and products
  • protect and promote products that have their roots in tradition and reflect a local way of doing things
  • encourage learning about food and where it comes from
  • encourage a spirit of genuine hospitality towards guests of the town or city

The Slow Food Movement

The Slow Food Movement was founded in 1986 by an Italian food and wine writer, Carlo Petrini, as a response to the standardising effects of fast food. Slow Food restores cultural dignity to food, promotes taste education and defends biodiversity. The Movement's conference of food communities, Terra Madre, joining together thousands of farmers and food producers from over 120 nations and held in Turin every two years, demonstrates the international nature and Katoomba Chamber of Commerce and Community broad focus. Powered by Joomla! Generated: 11 April, 2008, 16:07 gathering momentum of Slow Food.

Members of the Blue Mountains community have adopted Petrini's aims with enthusiasm. A steadily growing number of members have joined the local convivium (Slow Food focus group) which organises events built on the principles of Slow Food, and publicises the objectives of the movement. Today the organisation spans over 80 countries and has around 80,000 members.

Katoomba Chamber of Commerce and Community

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