SHINY new banner poles were installed near the corner of High and Barrack streets on Saturday to replace the old poles, which had remained bare and abandoned for years.
The old poles had been prohibitively expensive to use, costing $1,000 to raise a banner and another $1,000 to lower it again.
Setting up a banner used to require six or seven technicians from Bendigo council and a truckload of expensive equipment.
Now all it will take is a sturdy pair of hands.
The new poles come with an internal halyard that can raise and lower banners at no cost.
The new poles were the brainchild of Heathcote Tourism & Development Inc president Peter Maine, who said locals had been complaining about the previously naked poles.
‘‘It had been quite a discussion point in the town,’’ he said.
‘‘People didn’t understand why the poles had been left unused.
‘‘The banners bring a bit of colour and movement to the town,’’ Mr Maine said.
‘‘When people see a banner waving they see things are happening and the town’s alive.
‘‘It imparts a sense of excitement about what’s happening in the region and the town and it creates a good vibe.’’
‘‘We’re running a strategic plan for the region. Branding was one of the key elements for that process.
‘‘Incorporating that for the promoting and marketing for the region is another piece in the puzzle.’’
The first banner was raised by Greater City of Bendigo mayor Margaret Rourke on Saturday.
The flag poles will be available to community groups to promote local events.
Anyone interested in using the polls can contact the Visitor Information Centre.