AFTER 30 years of growing plants, Geoff and Judy Windsor have been recognised for their work with the Jo Ross Memorial Award.
They were honoured with the award at Wednesday's Australia Day citizenship and award ceremony held at Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre.
Presented by Greening Bathurst, the Jo Ross Memorial Award is given to an individual, group or institution in recognition of their ongoing efforts to improve the local environment.
For the Windsors, it acknowledges the decades of work they have put into their Blue Wren Bush Farm nursery at Wattle Flat, which specialises in growing local plants as well as other Australian natives.
Greening Bathurst's Hugh Gould presented the pair with their award and noted that many people would recognise them from the Bathurst Farmers Market.
Mr Windsor took to the stage to express gratitude for the recognition.
"We feel very honoured and also surprised to receive this award and we thank those who chose us," he said.
"For ourselves, we've always enjoyed being part of local revegetation work, collecting bush seeds and growing new plants.
"Judy and I have been doing this together for about 30 years, though we are slowing down now for reasons that are perhaps obvious.
"A very positive aspect of what we have been doing has been the friendship of the people that we have met as we've gone about growing our plants, and we've learnt much from them."
Mr Windsor described the last 30 years as a journey, one that has led them to better understand their local bushland.
"We started out 30 years ago seeing the bush and its life simply as being interesting and beautiful," he said.
"But as we visited many bushland areas and we saw local plants and plant communities in their natural settings, we learnt a lot about which plants grow together and where the different plant communities grow, and we got to know them and their environments.
"Around our home and nursery, where we have bushland all around, and where we spend most of our time, we've come to know our local birds and animals well also.
"We've come to feel connected to the land, and the bush, and its life, and to know it to be sacred and to love it. And we've also come to love working with the plants in our nursery.
"It's been a very rewarding journey and we have no regrets."
Wednesday's award ceremony also acknowledged Bathurst's 2022 Citizen of the Year, Libby Loneragan.
Mayor Robert Taylor presented her with her certificate and spoke about her contributions to the community over many years.
"For almost six decades, Libby, a physiotherapist, had helped patients achieve the best health outcomes possible," he said.
"She is acknowledged by her dedication to supporting, empowering and upskilling those around her."
Members of the Bathurst Youth Council were also celebrated on Australia Day.
Cr Taylor presented certificates to the members of the council that were in the threatre, acknowledging their contributions to the broader community in recent months.
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