He made a leap from Sydney to Bangalow

GARY Waddell and Lou Morris moved to Bangalow from Sydney less than two months ago.

Gary is an award-winning actor with a long list of film credits. Some of his most notable include roles in Chopper, Dirty Deeds and Getting Square. He has been nominated for Best Supporting Actor in a feature, The King is Dead.

"I first came up to the Northern Rivers in the 1970s and I loved it. Because of acting commitments and raising a daughter, it wasn't possible to make the move until now. Once our daughter Phoenix completed her university studies and moved out of home, it meant that Lou and I could leave Sydney.

"Last year Lou and I came up for Splendour in The Grass and Louie fell in love with the place and that weekend we made the commitment to move. I literally jumped in the air with joy, it was something I have wanted to do for years and I was so happy that Lou now wanted to make the move too.

"By this stage we knew our daughter was secure and we could take that big leap and leave the city.

"The move itself was horrendous. It's fair to say that we are both big collectors, more so Lou than I, but I love her collections. We have a mountain of books, old LP records, CDs and artwork. The removalists even commented on how many boxes we had. It took a 10-tonne truck to move all our stuff here!

"One of the great attractions about the move here is I have an incredible, eclectic group of friends here, many of them I have known for 40 years and it's fantastic to reconnect with them.

"I've been doing all sorts of work since I got here. I've just been working up on the Gold Coast doing some additional dialogue recording on a new television series starring Bryan Brown and Sam Neill called Old School to be shown on the ABC early next year. I still have some film commitments in Sydney for next year, but I'll just commute as needed.

"My partner Lou is the most fantastic cook and we intend to start some sort of food business in the near future. We love all the local produce that is available here. It's definitely one of the best things about living here.

"The thing that I notice more than anything is how clean the air is here and how alive you feel when you wake up in the morning. One of the other reasons we moved here is Lou has rheumatoid arthritis and it's so beneficial for her to be here in a warmer climate. There's nothing better for me than seeing her enjoying the beautiful sunshine that we have in abundance here.

"Apart from our old friends that we have here, we are meeting some great new people and we really feel like we're starting to make this place our home. It's nothing like Sydney where everyone is on their mobile phone and no one has the time to say hello. The people here make time for the important things in life, like community and friendships."

Gary's tips

  •  Take the time to drive and explore the place, take the back roads when you can; there are so many beautiful places in this region to explore.
  •  Get to Mullumbimby Farmers Market - it's the best produce market!

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