Knitting Nannas bid a final goodbye to Lismore MP
THE champagne will be flowing alongside the wool today as the founding branch of the Knitting Nannas have their last ever 'knit-in' outside Lismore MP Thomas George's office.
In light of the State Government's likely $25 million deal with Metgasco, the Nannas can finally hang up their needles.
Founder Clare Twomey said it would be a "tentative goodbye", in case Metgasco shareholders opted to reject the government buyback.
But the knit-ins, which have been weekly rituals for the last three years, will cease in their current form.
"I'd say there'd be a bit of champagne, a bit of fancy dress, and a lot of shrieking Nannas," Ms Twomey said.
However, no one should expect the Nannas or their legacy to suddenly disappear.
They've been at the frontline of the fight against coal-seam gas since June 2012, and have inspired tens of other Nanna chapters.
"At Bentley we spent a lot of our time and effort starting Nannas groups around Australia and the UK," Ms Twomey said.
"We've got between 36 and 40 active groups that we know. I think there's four in the UK."
Ms Twomey said the Nannas was founded to show how "unradical" protesters could be and as a means for older women to have their voices heard on environmental issues.
They have a "Nannafesto" which talks about staging peaceful protest against the "short-sighted and greedy plunder of our natural resources".
The message and method has transcended coal-seam gas, with coal mining and other issues in the frame. One group in Victoria is fighting old-growth forest logging.
Ms Twomey said the original Nannas would go on to support other causes, with a meeting planned today about what's next on the Nanna-genda.
Some would continue to travel to Chinchilla to help provide drinking water to farmers whose bores and tanks have been impacted by CSG, something the group has been doing consistently.
Others are helping local nanna Anne Thompson with her long-running Christmas drought appeal.
"We do travel around quite a lot to support the other Nanna groups, so we will be definitely doing that," Ms Twomey said.
"We raise money very quickly, and we spend it very quickly - when something is needed, we readily agree to give money away."