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James Halliday becomes Patron of the Wine Press Club of NSW

James Halliday has become Patron of the Wine Press Club of New South Wales. He succeeds the Club’s first and only patron, the much missed Mr Len Evans AO OBE. His appointment was made public at the Club’s tribute drinks to Len Evans held last night at Astral Bar and Restaurant, Star City, Sydney.

Halliday is Australia's most notable wine critic and wine writer, having authored or contributed to more than 50 wine books. He founded Brokenwood in the Hunter Valley and, later, Coldstream Hills in Victoria’s Yarra Valley. He is highly respected as a wine judge, both in Australia and internationally. Halliday was also the recipient of the Club’s 2005 Saltram Australian Wine Communicator Award, which recognised his magisterial Australian Wine Companion.

“Becoming Patron, or a Living Legend (I am already both) is an alarming event,” said Halliday of the appointment. “You are worried you are being put out to pasture, and reminded – hardly necessarily, I might add – of one’s advancing age and declining faculties. However, I am honoured to have been nominated as Patron of the Wine Press Club of New South Wales, a club which is vital, relevant and proactive – which are qualities notably absent in most organisations of its kind.”

Halliday replaces Len Evans, the 28 year old Club’s first and only patron. “Len was a terrific supporter of our activities and, particularly in recent years, a source of great guidance and advice” said WPC President, Darren Jahn.

“The innumerable heartfelt tributes to Len Evans which have been written or delivered since his death leave little or nothing more to say” noted Halliday. “Life moves on, as does the wine industry, but both will be forever marked by his loss. However, turn the coin over, and you find the peerless and impressionable contributions he made to the cause of fine wine. There is much to mourn, but even more to celebrate.”

Jahn added: “We are delighted that James, a past President and great supporter of the Club, has accepted our invitation. Len has left a rather large pair of shoes for James to fill, but we’ve no doubt that he will help us steer the right course and help us to evolve for the benefit of the Australian wine industry.”

James Halliday’s appointment takes effect immediately.

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