The party faithful took the opportunity for a Christmas party combined with a send-off for one of its favourites when the Tenterfield Branch of the National Party gathered at the Tenterfield Bowling Club on Saturday night.
Branch president Terry O’Sullivan said the gathering was a farewell for MP Thomas George, who has announced he will retire rather than contest the March state election. His replacement – Nationals preselected candidate Austin Curtin was also present.
Mr O’Sullivan said Tenterfield mayor Peter Petty (who had also run for pre-selection) gave a fitting speech, and Mr George was presented with bottles of local wine from Splitters Swamp Winery, known to meet his tastes.
“We had to be bit careful with the wine,” Mr O’Sullivan said.
“We all know how one bottle of wine brought down a premier.”
Mr George’s wife Deb was also presented with chocolates.
Mr O’Sullivan said the gathering was for the local people who had helped Mr George get elected, with around 30 people coming along.
“We’ll miss Thomas when he’s not coming here so often, but he has earned a change.
“I hope he’ll come back and say ‘G’day’ sometimes.”