Read the Mayor’s message for updates on new recreational facilities and libraries, development of the ambitious coastal walkway from Manly to Palm Beach and big picture issues that affect the Northern Beaches.
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Today marks the official start of the Rip Curl Classic at North Narrabeen Beach. While the waves weren’t favourable today for the heats it was still a great chance for people to come out and enjoy meeting some of the elite and upcoming surfers. We are very excited to be hosting this prestigious 10 day event which is generating a much needed boost to our local economy. There are no tickets required for the event but there is limited capacity so please make sure you plan your visit.
On Monday, works began on the new $7.5 million purpose-built Long Reef Surf Life Saving Club (LRSLSC). The building has been designed to blend with the natural environment while providing great new facilities. This collaborative project with the Federal and State Government, LRSLSC and community groups, is very exciting and I know our community is looking forward to seeing the build come together.
This week also marked the start of the Seniors Festival, and with our older community members playing such an important role in volunteering for the many local community groups this is an opportunity for us to say ‘thank you’ and provide some great activities that celebrate their contribution.
Youth Week kicks off today and marks the start of seven days of activities. The event is organised by young people for young people and provides opportunities to share ideas, attend live events and a chance for them to showcase their talents. I encourage all young people to get involved in this great initiative.
It was amazing to learn this week that the Northern Beaches had almost 1200 registrations in the Duke of Edinburgh Awards in the last year – this is the largest number of registrations in the state. This program is a wonderful legacy that His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh has left our community and the world. If you would like to pass on your condolences to Her Majesty the Queen and the royal family at this sad time, we have placed a link for online messages on our website and a book for signing will be available in our Dee Why Customer Service Centre until next Friday.
North Narra will be in its element from Friday next week, playing host to the best of the best professional surfers from around the globe.
When we were approached by the World Surf League to support this event back in March, naturally we jumped at it. What an incredible opportunity to support our local economy, showcase our area to an international audience and entertain the locals and visitors alike. Plus give our home grown talent a leg up, surfing in their own backyard.
Make sure you to get down there and soak up the atmosphere and watch the world-class competition during the 10-day event.
We’re also celebrating our seniors next week with a great diversity of events and activities during the Seniors Festival. Try walking basketball, learn how to take better pics with your phone or join a guided heritage or bush walk – there is something for everyone during the three week festival.
And not be out done, our young people will also find a host of events to enjoy during Youth Week also kicking off next Friday. What a difference 12 months make!
Have a great weekend.
Hard to believe it’s Easter already and another school holidays has rolled around so quickly.
If you’re staying local don’t forget you can use your Dine and Discover vouchers at a range of great venues, including plenty offering activities to entertain the kids. It's a great opportunity to check out our very own Glen Street too. Yes, your Discover vouchers are valid there too.
To further support our local businesses, and our visitors, we’re also launching a Live Like a Local campaign based on recommendations from our community. Please submit your local favourite spot, cafe, pub, restaurant or experience here or by using the hashtags #LoveNorthernBeaches and/or #LiveLikeALocalNB on your social media. Personally, I am a fan of the B1 and exploring local food offerings and pubs along the route.
We’ll be highlighting a range of local suburbs over the coming months so be sure to give your favourite local business a plug so they can be included!
And if you are still looking for things to keep the kids busy in the holidays we have a few spots left in our vacation care program or check out what’s on at your local library, environment centre, gallery or aquatic centre. Find out more.
If you are heading out of town, please take care on the roads and avoid the double demerits in place for the whole long weekend.
Enjoy the Easter break.
So apparently we need to get our dancing shoes on – the NSW Premier has further eased COVID restrictions from Monday. It certainly feels a long way from the challenges we all experienced during the lockdown at Christmas. Of course, we all need to keep vigilant but how great to see a return to larger events and gatherings. Well done everyone
This means our very own Glen St Theatre is able to return to full capacity too so check out what’s on the program – you can even use your Dine and Discover vouchers when booking your tickets.
Council events are picking up and there are a few things to choose from this weekend.
All fingers and toes crossed we’ll finally get to host World Food Markets at Winnererremy Bay in Mona Vale tonight which we have had to cancel twice thanks to poor weather. Food trucks, music and great atmosphere combine for a fun family night out.
We’ve got the very popular watercraft auction on tomorrow at Rowland Reserve with around 100 items including dinghies, boats, kayaks and paddle boards up for grabs.
Look out for Manly Town Hall bathed in yellow light tonight and across the weekend for EndoMarch, raising awareness of Endometriosis which will effect more than 11% of women at some time in their life. Learn more about this painful disease and how to recognise the symptoms here.
And don’t forget to grab a ticket for our Easter long weekend outdoor cinema at Lionel Watts Reserve – tickets are only $5 and selling fast.
Have a great weekend.
Wow, according to the NSW Government, over half a million dollars has been spent at over 420 local Northern Beaches businesses registered in the Dine and Discover Program.
With $45 being the average spend, that’s a win for the many long-suffering businesses, hit so hard by the COVID shut downs. The vouchers are now being extended to other parts of Sydney so register your business share in the benefits. And if you are a resident who hasn’t yet got your vouchers, get on board! There are lots of incredible places where you use them.
Next week I am thrilled to be officially opening the Northern Beaches Woodturners Building – a brand new home for this passionate not-for-profit group who had previously operated out of cramped and unsuitable quarters.
The revamped new facility will not only support the future expansion of the woodturners club but will also provide a space to share with other community groups. Thanks to the commitment of all involved to get this great outcome.
In other good news, we now have funding from the NSW Government to deliver the missing link between sections 2 and 3 at Manly War Memorial State Park (Manly Dam). The 390m raised boardwalk will run along the waters edge, be fully accessible for people of all abilities and is designed to minimise disturbance to vegetation.
And finally, nominations close soon for the Eco Awards. Be sure to nominate someone you know doing great work to protect our environment and promote sustainability.
Have a great weekend.
Choose to challenge is the theme for International Women’s Day this year, calling on both men and women to challenge gender stereotypes; challenge sexism and misogyny; challenge ourselves to speak out; and work together to deliver true equality.
I am proud to report that your Council is doing pretty well in those challenges. The majority of our permanent workforce are women and half of our managers. You’ll find women engineers and construction managers, landscape architects and rangers, strategic planners and bushland managers. We can always do more but it’s great to have women in such diverse roles across the organisation.
You have also elected a Council with strong female representation - seven of our 15 Councillors are women. This is pretty unusual, women make up only a third of all councillors serving on the 128 NSW councils.
This has prompted the NSW government to launch a campaign to get those numbers up at the elections in September this year. I can say it is a great way to serve your community and make a difference to the lives of people in our area. Choose to challenge – learn how you can get involved here.
A shout out this week to everyone who took part in Clean Up Australia Day. I’ve been sent some great pics of kids involved from a local Manly childcare service and I know many local scout and guide groups, organisations and individuals stepped up to do their part too – on land and even underwater. Thanks for your incredible efforts.
Have a great weekend.
If you are an artist, a young musician or just love art and culture read on, there is lot of news for you this week.
First up, a huge congratulations to all the HSC Visual Arts students with works on exhibition at the Manly Art Gallery and Museum. The quality and diversity is incredible and a fantastic display of the young talent we are lucky enough to have here on the Beaches. If you get a chance, make sure you get down to see it before it closes on 28 March.
In case you missed it, last week we announced a new-look art prize to celebrate the unique and special character of our area and our community’s passion for our beach and bushland environments.
The new Environmental Art and Design Prize will run over two weeks in August and will include a range of in-studio events to support our creative community and build broader involvement. Stay tuned for more information on how you can get involved.
And speaking of studios, I was fortunate to get a preview this week of the great new Avalon Workshop, providing much needed access to creative space for the area on the lower level of the Avalon Golf Clubhouse. It’s open across this weekend for the community to explore, with staff on hand to answer any questions.
Finally, a call out for young musicians to enter our Northern Composure Unplugged competition. This premier acoustic competition is open to performers and groups aged 12-19years and we are looking for 30 entrants to have their song professionally recorded ahead of the finals. Enter now.
Have a great weekend.
In exciting news, we announced this week that Council has signed a new deal for electricity supply which will save $1.9m, slash our carbon footprint by 80% and support the regional NSW economy.
Under the deal, electricity to Council’s large buildings and all streetlights will be supplied by Infigen, with renewable-sourced electricity generated primarily by wind turbines located on a site at Bodangora, near Wellington.
This deal shaves some nine years off our commitment to swap to 100% renewable energy alternatives, an incredible outcome for our environment and our bottom line.
Your Council also agreed this week, to provide a one-off contribution of $2,000 each to the seventeen Northern Beaches RFS brigades and the two SES units in lieu of the civic event we have been unable to hold, to thank the volunteers and their families for their incredible service during the 2019/20 bushfire and storm seasons.
The funding can be allocated to internally-run events or to the purchase of equipment. We feel this is the most practical way we can still honour a promise we made to recognise their services prior to the pandemic over 12 months ago. A huge thanks again to all volunteers for their ongoing commitment to our community.
Finally, it’s great to see Justice of Peace volunteers back providing services at various community venues - to see if there is one near you email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have a great weekend.
The Northern Beaches is back in the spotlight again this week for all the right reasons!
We are thrilled to be hosting the best of the best surfers here in North Narrabeen in April as a key event on the World Surfing League 2021 calendar. This is great news for our area – not just because we’ll get to watch some incredible competition and give our locals a home-town advantage, but because of the estimated $10-$15million boost expected to our local economy.
Athletes will be required to go undergo some strict quarantine under their agreement with the NSW government and will compete in Newcastle before heading to North Narra for 16-26 April.
And in another win for our area, we joined Ausgrid and Energy Minister Matt Keane this week to launch the first trial of a community battery on the east coast right here in Beacon Hill. This is the future of energy with homes powered by their own solar, stored in a community battery, saving on power bills and lowering emissions.
We will be watching the trial with considerable interest and, if successful, hope it will be the first of many and will encourage more residents to switch to solar more quickly.
We’ve around 11,000 households with rooftop solar but around 60,000 are suitable properties for solar. That is nearly 50,000 homes not taking advantage of significant cost savings. Initiatives like this which help break down barriers to switching to solar are critical. Quite often a decision to wait is because you are unsure if you should get a battery.. now you don’t have to. And there are so many other reasons why these community batteries are critical for our future energy infrastructure. I encourage you to read more here.
Finally, a reminder to take a look at the Environmental Impact Statement for the Beaches Link Tunnel and have your say before consultation closes on 1 March. Council is also developing a submission, informed by the extensive consultation we did directly with residents during the first stage of feedback. It will be considered by the elected Council at the February council meeting before being submitted to government.
Have a great weekend.
Long Reef surf club demolition is about to start! Within the next few weeks you’ll see the fences go up and bulldozers move in as work gets underway on this exciting new community asset.
The new surf club and community facilities have been a long time coming for Long Reef and the new buildings and surrounds will look great while providing everything the volunteers and community need for many years to come. After a good decade of stop and start on this project, it is especially pleasing for all involved to see it finally underway.
And work has already begun on the new amenities and sports facilities at Lionel Watts east. It has been incredible to watch the masterplan for this whole area come together with new sportsfields, skatepark, showground upgrade and playground. This is the last major piece of the masterplan and should be complete by October.
The Northern Beaches Eco-Awards nominations open this week, celebrating those who protect our Northern Beaches environment. There are a few new categories this year so be sure to check it out and nominate those who deserve to be recognised.
Have a great weekend.