The last three months have been difficult as Clunes has lost so many of its community activists and Booktown Festival stalwarts. Tim Hayes was one of the four local residents who were the founders and driving force behind the Clunes the Booktown Festival. In 2007 he, with Graeme Johnstone, Linda Newitt and Tess Brady, embarked on the Clunes Booktown project which significantly enhanced tourism and prosperity in the town. The annual Booktown Festival attracts around 15,000 visitors over two days and is a highlight of the goldfields regional calendar. For 10 years Tim ran the secretariate ensuring that the organisation was well-run, nimble, creative and able take on opportunities as they arose. He oversaw the 2010 bid to join the International Organisation of Booktowns, the first membership offered to a town in the Southern Hemisphere.
Tim was an outstanding local resident that contributed his time and energy to assist the local community. In 2006 he was elected councillor and 2007 became Mayor of Hepburn Shire. One of his most outstanding achievements was the $3.23 million redevelopment of the Clunes Museum and Interpretive Centre and significant renovations to the Clunes and District Agricultural Show grounds. He served on several community and local boards including as Chair of the Central Highlands Regional Libraries Corporation (2010 – 2012) and as a member of the Community Bank, Creswick and District taking an active role on the board from 2014 until 2021 where he served as a member of the Business Development Committee. Tim’s contributions to his community will be remembered for many years to come.
Tim died on 28 October 2023 after an illness and is survived by his partner Michael Waugh. Our condolences to his family and friends.
Board and Staff