Free drinks for firies putting their lives on the line
"Country pubs are different from city pubs - they're more involved in the community."
Brett Ryman took on the Coramba Hotel two years ago after moving from Sydney.
He loves the friendly village atmosphere.
As fires started to whip up around the region he put out the same sign he has during previous fire events offering free drinks for all the volunteers.
"I just thought it was the right thing to do," Brett said.
"They're putting their lives on the line so if they need a cold beer or soft drink when they're coming through and they're buggered, they can stop in."
Firefighters from across NSW are being mobilised to fight three major blazes in the north of the State:
- The Bees Nest fire west of Dorrigo which has already burnt out 66, 694 hectares with a perimeter of more than 300 kilometres;
- Shark Creek 2 which is burning to the north and south of the villages of Angourie and Wooloweyah and has destroyed 9,325 hectares.
- The Long Gully, Drake fire near Tenterfield which has taken out 39,706 hectares.
"We've had trucks coming through left, right and centre," Brett said.
The same community spirit is also on show at Dorrigo where an evacuation centre has been set up at the showground.
Kymbalee Tarran is one of the many people helping to man the centre and says she has been inundated with clothing and bedding; and food donations are also flooding in.
"We've got three different trucks coming tomorrow from Kempsey, Coffs Harbour and Armidale," Kymbalee explained.
Approximately 50 people have registered at the centre but there are many more coming and going.
"They are resilient and very worried about their properties."
She says there is a growing sense of frustration at the lack of information filtering back to the evacuees but concedes the fire is burning in some extremely remote, rugged terrain making communications difficult.
To help cheer them up the Dorrigo Gazette Theatre will hold a special screening of Mamma Mia tonight.