Fame walk could go to Tweed
By ED SOUTHORN
A WALK of Fame featuring some of Australia's biggest celebrities, with handprints in concrete blocks and names engraved on brass stars, could end up in Tweed Heads, near the Johnny O'Keefe statue or on the footpath next to Chris Cunningham Park.
The Walk of Fame, proposed by Kingscliff businessman Alan Black to raise $130,000 for children's charities in its first year, is expected to be considered for approval by Tweed Shire Council next week.
Mr Black yesterday said he had decided to seek approval to relocate the planned walkway from Kingscliff to Tweed Heads, after some Kingscliff residents objected to the idea.
He said survey forms left at the bowls club and Bank of Queensland in Kingscliff showed 15 people against and 70 for the walkway.
The two possible sites now identified on Wharf Street could each allow the tourist attraction walkway to be extended across the NSW/Queensland border along Griffith Street, Mr Black said.
The Wintersun festival already has a collection of about 20 stars' handprints on concrete blocks, including Slim Dusty and Rolf Harris.
Wintersun chief Barry McNamara said his festival committee some time ago planned a stars' walkway linking Tweed Heads and Coolangatta, but had been wrongly advised on the concrete mix to use for the hand prints.
As a result, the Wintersun blocks were unable to withstand pedestrian traffic and had remained in storage with Gold Coast City Council for about 10 years, Mr McNamara said.
He said he was still investigating if the handprints on the unsuitable blocks could be cast in bronze for a walkway.
Mr McNamara, the Southern Gold Coast Chamber of Commerce president, said he would talk with Tweed Shire councillor John Murray, a member of Mr Black's Walk of Fame organising committee, to see if Mr Black and Wintersun could work together on the celebrity walkway.
But Mr Black indicated at this stage he was not planning to work with Wintersun.
Mr Black is a British-born entertainer, property developer and entrepreneur who retired to Australia from the United States in 1982.
His business interests include the Endless Summer shopping centre on Kennedy Drive, West Tweed.
Charity funds from Mr Black's walkway would be raised from donations, sponsors, seating sales at celebrity inductions and auctions of items donated by celebrities.
Tweed Mayor Warren Polglase said the Walk of Fame was a good idea.
But Cr Polglase said its success would depend on support from ce- lebrities.