Please read the following conditions carefully. Destination NSW’s assessment panel will allocate funding for the Incubator Event stream according to the terms in this document.

The Regional Event Fund identifies and supports events in Regional NSW that have the potential to act as cornerstone, or ‘Flagship’, tourism events for their area by attracting overnight visitation to their region and delivering long-term benefits to the host destination.

Since 1996, the Regional Events Fund has provided almost $13 million in funding to more than 440 separate events throughout Regional NSW over 24 annual rounds.

The Regional Event Fund comprises three funding streams providing a development pipeline for events from inception, through emergence, to their establishment as tourism events:

  • Incubator Event Fund, for the establishment of new events
  • Flagship Event Fund, for the marketing of emerging events to increase their profile and encourage visitation
  • Event Development Fund, for the strategic development of proven events as drivers of tourism.

Each of the three streams within the Regional Event Fund has different eligibility, selection criteria and evaluation processes. Applications for the three streams are managed separately.

This Terms & Conditions document refers only to the conditions of participation in the Event Development stream. Terms and Conditions for the Incubator Event stream and Flagship Event stream are available separately.

General eligibility

Only events held in the seven Destination Networks are eligible to apply for funding through the Incubator Event Fund.

Learn more about the Destination Networks here.

See a map showing the boundaries of the Destination Networks by Local Government Area below:

Events held in Local Government Areas not in a Destination Network are not eligible to apply for funding through the three streams of the Regional Event Fund.

Events held in areas on the border between NSW and another state should demonstrate as part of their application that at least 80% of the event’s activity is physically based in NSW or that at least 50% of its economic benefit flows to NSW.

The following event types are not eligible to apply for funding from the three streams of the Regional Event Fund:

  • Regular (eg: weekly, monthly or held multiple times a year) community events such as markets, bazaars, sports meets (home/away games, local tournaments), club gatherings (RSL, Rotary, Chambers of Commerce etc.), classes and workshops
  • One-off events that are not planned to continue after a single year, such as anniversary celebrations, concerts, exhibitions and theatre seasons. This includes annual events whose location changes each year, or events that are not guaranteed to remain in a specific destination for the long-term
  • Events that have a religious ceremony or celebration as the principal focus such as Easter or Christmas celebrations or the similar festivals of other religions. Events held over religious holiday weekends will be considered if the religious festival is not the focus of the event (e.g.: food or music festivals)
  • Community public holiday celebrations such as Anzac Day, Australia Day, King’s Birthday if the holiday is the primary focus. Events held on public holidays will be considered if the holiday is not the focus (eg: food or music festival)
  • Event series such as sporting events held in multiple locations across the year
  • Extension activities or satellite events of already existing events. Only the parent event will be considered
  • Touring events such as concert tours, circuses and fun fairs
  • Promotional events where the marketing of a product is the principal objective
  • Events whose overnight visitor impact is not immediate i.e.: that promote visitation to a destination at a later date
  • Business events such as trade shows, exhibitions, conferences and industry meetings. Consumer events that include a business event as an extension event may be considered if the consumer event is the primary purpose of the event.
  • Events owned and/or operated by an agency or entity of the Federal Government, or a State or Territory Government including New South Wales.

Event Development Stream


The Event Development stream supports events that have previously received the maximum funding permitted through the Flagship Event stream and can present a strategy for future growth that includes the continued development of its tourism potential to drive overnight visitation to the event.


The Event Development stream offers one-off annual grants of up to $50,000 (excl. GST) to support key strategic growth initiatives.

An event may apply for any amount up to and including $50,000 but must be able to provide justification for the amount requested within the context of its growth strategy, overall budget and event plan.

Applications will be accepted on an annual basis only and with reference to specific initiatives. Multi-year agreements will not be considered. An event may apply for funding in more than one year, but the decision on funding will be based on the merit of the initiative being supported in each year of application.

The payment of any funds granted through the Event Development stream will be tied to the delivery of key milestones and KPIs related to the initiative being supported.

Use of Funds

The Event Development stream provides funding to support initiatives that will have a direct impact on increasing overnight visitation to the event. A clear strategic rationale will be required for all initiatives, however activities that may be eligible for funding include:

  • Promotional activities with a measurable overnight visitation outcome (e.g.: promotions with a unique call to action)
  • Cooperative marketing activities with the tourism industry (e.g.: the development and promotion of packages to the event that include accommodation or access to other tourist attractions)
  • Costs associated with implementing robust visitor research methodologies
  • Infrastructure costs associated with encouraging extended stays (e.g.: additional hire costs to extend the event an extra day)
  • Costs associated with the delivery of an improved visitor experience (e.g.: grandstands, information services, facilities)
  • Costs associated with developing broader accommodation options or the delivery of temporary accommodation (e.g.: shuttle buses to neighbouring towns, implementation of home hosting programs, creation of temporary camping grounds)
  • Consultancy fees for marketing, PR, digital or event management specialists provided there are clear and measurable outcomes that demonstrate an improvement on existing activities.

Event Development funding is not intended to replace previous or other event funding. Event Development stream grants must be expended on the initiatives described in the application. The applicant will be required to suggest milestones for the delivery of the initiative to which Destination NSW will assign fund payments.

Event Development stream monies must not be used:

  • For existing marketing and promotional activities
  • For existing infrastructure and operational costs
  • For existing staff costs or expenses, including travel costs
  • For event launches
  • For live broadcast or webcast production costs
  • As prize money, gifts or contributions to charitable groups. (Where some event proceeds go to charity, evidence will be required to show adequate funds are retained for the ongoing operation of the event), or
  • For performer / artist fees and travel expenses.

Fund Eligibility

To be eligible to receive funding through the Event Development stream, an event must have previously received and completed triennial funding through the Flagship Event stream and be taking place between 1 July 2023 and 30 June 2024.

Potential applicants should note that:

  • Applications for the Event Development stream must be received by Destination NSW in sufficient time prior to the next event to allow for assessment and delivery of the initiative for which funding has been requested
  • Applications will not be considered if, in the reasonable opinion of Destination NSW, there is insufficient time from date of application for assessment and delivery of the initiative for which funding has been requested
  • The event for which funding has been requested must have previously received triennial funding from the Flagship Event stream
  • The event must be held in one of the six regional NSW Destination Networks geographical areas
  • The event must have a minimum of 80% of its activities physically based in NSW
  • The event must not receive funding from another Destination NSW regional event funding program in the same year
  • The applicant must be the event owner, own the rights to the event and have relevant approvals for the event
  • The event owner must be a sole trader, company, incorporated association, or trust entity
  • The event owner must be financially solvent
  • The event owner must hold public liability insurance
  • The event owner must not have debts to the NSW Government
  • The event owner must hold an Australian Business Number
  • The event owner agrees to enter into a contract for funding with Destination NSW.

Fund Criteria

To be considered for funding from the Event Development stream, an event must demonstrate that they sufficiently meet the following fund criteria.

Destination NSW is looking for mature events that have previously received the maximum funding permitted through the Flagship Event stream; and can now present a strategy for future growth that includes the continued development of its tourism potential to drive overnight visitation to the event and surrounding region. Applications will be assessed using the following criteria:

Economic Impact (50%)
Destination NSW targets its investment in events that will deliver new expenditure into a region through visitation. Applicants need to demonstrate:

  • a. That the event is seen as a high-profile event for its region, has clearly defined and sustainable initiatives for achieving visitation growth, including appropriate levels of accommodation and services to event visitors. (50%)

Strategic marketing alignment and community impact (40%)
This refers to effective promotion of your event and its region to visitors outside of the region while also engaging the local community. Applicants need to:

  • a. Present a proven marketing strategy that achieves measurable outcomes in driving overnight visitors from outside the event’s immediate region. (20%)
  • b. Demonstrate well-developed and collaborative relationships with local Council, the local tourism industry and Destination Network, including financial and/or in-kind investment. (20%)

Event planning and due diligence (10%)
Event organisers need to demonstrate sound event management practices and that they’ve undertaken sufficient due diligence in their event planning. Applicants need to demonstrate:

    • a. An organisational structure with demonstrated success in event delivery, particularly in operations, marketing, communications, finance and risk management. A mandatory requirement of this component of the criteria is a clear strategy and plan for collecting data and assessing ex-region visitation numbers and experience. (10%)

To be awarded an Event Development stream grant, an application must score highly against the Key Criteria and the assessment panel must be convinced that:

  • The event has established itself as a Flagship event for its region
  • The organising committee or group has a clearly articulated vision for the event’s future, supported by sound argument and data, and driven by an objective to increase overnight visitation
  • The organisers can demonstrate they have built partnerships with tourism operators to increase the event’s appeal, attract increased visitation and encourage extended stays or dispersal throughout the region.

Application Process

Applications to the 2023-24 Event Development stream will open on 2 March 2023 and will remain open until available funds are exhausted.

Applications must be received by Destination NSW in sufficient time prior to the next event to allow for assessment and delivery of the initiative for which funding has been requested .

Applications will not be considered if, in the reasonable opinion of Destination NSW, there is insufficient time from date of application for assessment and delivery of the initiative for which funding has been requested.

All applications must be in the form of a proposal document that includes the following elements:

  • A description of the event, its history and relevance to the local region
  • A city/town profile that demonstrates its capacity to absorb increased visitation beyond current event capacity, including the availability of full-time and temporary accommodation, transport and other services relevant to the event, infrastructure and venues
  • A summary of the organisational and management structure of the event including a clear division of responsibilities, the skill set of key personnel, the use of external agencies and consultants and the reliance on and availability of volunteers
  • A summary of event visitation trends over the last three years of the event including data, audience/visitor research methodology, relevant industry partnerships, results and key learnings
  • A summary of the strategic vision for the event for the next three to five years outlining its growth potential, key opportunities, strategic initiatives for success, SWOT (strengths, opportunities, weaknesses, threats) analysis, limitations and risk areas
  • A summary of the key growth initiative that funding is being applied for, including a detailed description, involvement of partners/contractors, delivery timeline and clear success metrics on which the milestones will be based
  • A full event budget for the next event including a detailed cost breakdown for the initiative funding is being sought for supported by quotes or other relevant information
  • A marketing plan outlining strategies for achieving growth beyond current attendance and visitation, key target audiences, marketing channels and measurable objectives
  • Letters of support from local Council, key tourism or industry partners and other relevant stakeholders that reference the initiative being proposed
  • Any supporting information that the applicant considers relevant to their application.

All applications must be emailed to the Regional Event Fund Coordinator at ref.admin@dnsw.com.au.

An email confirming receipt of the proposal will be sent to each applicant. It is recommended that applicants contact the Regional Event Fund Coordinator on 0419 903 701 if they do not receive an email confirmation.

The Panel

Applications for Event Development stream grants will be assessed by a panel convened by Destination NSW (the Panel). The Panel will consist of representatives with experience in events, regional tourism and/or marketing.

The Panel will assess each application and meet to consider its recommendation for funding.

The Panel reserves the right to request additional information from the applicant where it deems it necessary to do so.

The Panel will make its recommendations for Event Development stream grant funding according to the following principles of the Regional Event Fund:

  • The Event Development stream is a co-operative arrangement between Destination NSW and the regional event
  • The Event Development stream is a Destination NSW financial sponsorship program that supports the strategic development of selected regional events to achieve tourism outcomes of benefit to Regional NSW
  • The Event Development stream seeks to assist the development of those events that expressly contribute to the unique identity of the tourism regions of the State and demonstrate the potential to act as ‘flagships’ for those regions
  • Receipt of a previous grant from the three streams of the Regional Event Fund is no indication that a current application will be successful. The Panel will make its recommendations for funding based on the merits of the event’s application for that year.

Destination NSW reserves the right not to award funding if the applications are of insufficient merit in the opinion of the Panel. Similarly, Destination NSW reserves the right to award an amount less than applied for if the assessors deem the amount requested is not warranted.


Applicants will have the opportunity to contact Destination NSW to receive feedback on their applications following assessment but should note that:

  • Information provided by Destination NSW is a guide only and is prepared in good faith. Destination NSW has sought to ensure that the information is true and correct at the time of presentation
  • Feedback is supplied based on the information provided to Destination NSW. Destination NSW does not make any representation or warranty about the accuracy, suitability, reliability, currency or completeness of any feedback provided
  • Destination NSW cannot promise any results or benefits from an applicant’s participation in any initiatives or offerings. All applicants are responsible for determining any further investigations, information and consideration that might be required
  • It is the applicant and event management’s responsibility to decide, based on their full knowledge and understanding of their business situation, how relevant the information is. Destination NSW recommends seeking independent professional advice (legal, financial or otherwise)
  • Destination NSW is not liable for any loss resulting from any action taken or reliance made by the applicant on any feedback and information provided. No guarantees are made of any particular outcome if an applicant chooses to rely on the feedback.

Event Agreement

The provision of Event Development stream grants by Destination NSW to successful applicants is subject to the Event Organiser entering into and abiding by the terms of an Event Agreement signed by the Event Organiser and Destination NSW (the Event Agreement). The Event Agreement details a range of marketing and other deliverables required by Destination NSW. These include, but are not limited to, a requirement to:

  • Provide progress reports (in person or by phone) on the delivery of the event to Destination NSW at regular intervals and in accordance with the Event Agreement, including the delivery of the initiative for which funding has been awarded and its payment milestones
  • Include the NSW Government logo, as supplied by Destination NSW, on all marketing collateral and advertising associated with the event that is receiving the Event Development Fund grant
  • Give Destination NSW the right to approve all marketing and advertising material that includes its logo at the artwork stage prior to printing or publication. Destination NSW requires a minimum of 4 working days to review the material for approval
  • Give Destination NSW the right to negotiate the placement, priority & prominence of its logo on event collateral
  • Create, update and maintain an event listing on visitnsw.com
  • Offer Destination NSW signage opportunities at the event
  • Offer Destination NSW the opportunity to integrate messaging into the event’s social media and digital channels
  • Include destination content on the event website
  • Submit a detailed post-event report and financial statement outlining the expenditure of the Event Development stream grant monies and an assessment of the success of the strategic growth initiative. The report must be submitted within two (2) months of the completion of the event unless otherwise agreed with Destination NSW. Failure to submit this evaluation report and financial statement may jeopardise the applicant’s future eligibility for Destination NSW funding.

If the Event Organiser does not enter into the Event Agreement, breaches its obligations under the Event Agreement including failure to deliver on a milestone, Destination NSW reserves the right to withhold funding or claim a refund of any funds already provided in respect of the event.

Important contacts

Destination NSW Fund Administration

Co-ordinator, Regional Event Fund
GPO Box 7050
Sydney NSW 2001
M: 0419 903 701
E: ref.admin@dnsw.com.au

Other conditions

The following other conditions apply:

  • Destination NSW may provide additional in-kind marketing support to events funded through the Incubator Event stream as part of its ongoing marketing activities. Destination NSW will, from time to time, request event information and high-resolution content to assist with the marketing of Incubator events. A photo brief can be requested from Destination NSW
  • Destination NSW reserves the right, as a condition of funding, to make use of event data for the purposes of market research and evaluation to enable the long-term development of events in New South Wales
  • Successful applicants should retain all records relating to the event, including expenditure, and make them available for audit purposes if required
  • All events financially supported by Destination NSW through the Incubator Event stream are encouraged to consolidate their financial position through the seeking of corporate and other support whilst they are part of the Regional Event Fund
  • An event eligible to apply to the Incubator Event stream is not eligible to apply to the Flagship Event stream or the Event Development stream in that same year
  • • An event awarded a grant through the 2020 – 2022 Regional Event Fund that has been deferred to 2023 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic or extreme weather are not eligible to apply for additional funding for the same event from the Regional Event Fund in 2023/24. Where an event that was funded under the 2020 - 2022 Regional Event Fund has been postponed to 2023 and organisers intend to present a second event at the usual event timing later in the year, the second event is eligible for funding from the 2023/34 Regional Event Fund.
  • By lodging an application, applicants consent to the application, information in the application and the applicant’s contact details to be shared with the Destination Network in which the event is held. Please consult our Privacy Policy on the management of Privacy.

Destination NSW Discretion

Potential applicants should note that:

  • No funding application is guaranteed to result in funding from Destination NSW
  • No applicant is guaranteed funding to the full amount requested in their application
  • Destination NSW reserves the right to vary the amount of funding at any time
  • Destination NSW reserves the right to vary the terms of Incubator Event stream funding at any time in particular the awarding of funding
  • The number and location of events that will be funded by Destination NSW will be determined by Destination NSW in its discretion
  • Funding through the 2023-24 Incubator Event stream is available to events taking place between 1 July 2023 and 30 June 2024 January and 31 December 2022, although Destination NSW reserves the right to vary this as it requires. Following the announcement of events to be funded in the 2023-24 Incubator Event stream, no further Incubator Event stream grants will be available until a future Regional Event Fund program opens.