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  • Mayor Michael Regan

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.

Friday 11 June

How great are our local kids! I am constantly impressed by the talent, enthusiasm and skill of Northern Beaches teenagers.

And at Council we’d like to hear more of what our future leaders think. Applications are open now for our Youth Advisory Group, 30 young people who give us their feedback and ideas for events, programs and projects. We are looking for five young people from each ward, aged 12-21. Applications close 27 June.

We are also launching a new program to mentor young people to produce a local event for other young people. They’ll get to plan and develop the event through a series of workshops run by industry professionals. A great opportunity to learn new skills and make a difference. Apply now.

Or if art is more your thing, there are just eight days left to get your entries in for the new Environmental Art and Design Prize. There are a number of categories including two especially for young artists and designers, one for ages 7-12 and the second 13-18 years. With a $2,000 prize for each youth category, and the chance to have works exhibited, it’s well worth an entry.

It was fantastic to host Her Excellency the Honourable Margaret Beazley AC QC Governor of New South Wales this week. She met with our Chambers of Commerce and some of our local businesses in Avalon to hear about the ongoing challenges businesses face due to COVID-19. Her interest and support is appreciated.

Finally, whatever you do this long weekend, drive safely and remember double demerit points. Police will be out in force.

Have a great weekend

Friday 4 June

“Let’s get active, not anxious. Let’s be bold, not timid.”

That’s the message from the United Nations this World Environment Day 2021, encouraging everyone across the world to do more to “make peace with nature” and join #GenerationRestoration.

Council can help! Our free Simplifying Solar expo in Manly tomorrow will help you navigate the ins and outs of energy efficiency, renewable energy, solar and battery technology and the solar installation process. You can even win one of three free home energy assessments on the day.

For local businesses, we’re also hosting a business webinar next week to help you save on emissions and energy costs.

And we have a number of other fun activities this weekend like a bird walk and talk and our community nursery open day (with plant giveaway).

Busy this weekend? We have plenty of online options available including an A to Z of recycling and some great ‘how-tos’ on making possum dreys, using worm farms, creating bees wax wraps and planting natives.

At Council we are also pulling our weight by powering Council sites with 100% renewable-sourced electricity (saving $1.9 million over the next seven years), slashing our annual emissions by about 80%. We have partnered on a community battery trial in Beacon Hill (at no cost) and installed over 800KW of solar panels on our buildings. We are investing in electric cars for our fleet, and the infrastructure needed to power them, and working with Ausgrid to replace all our street lights with LED’s to further reduce our energy consumption and save 10’s of thousands dollars per year to boot.

Plus we have lots of programs to support the community and businesses to reduce single use plastics, cut water consumption and energy use thus saving you money, and much much more

There is plenty we all can do to become #GenerationRestoration. Let’s be bold together.

Have a great weekend.

Friday 28 May

A sad time on the Northern Beaches at the passing of two of our greats – Bob Fulton and Col Crawford.

‘Bozo’ was a true sporting legend with too many accolades to list here, both as a player and coach. He inspired the best from those around him and his contribution, not just to the Sea Eagles but to the broader code, cannot be understated. He will be sorely missed.

Col Crawford was another local giant. He was not just a very successful businessman but a generous supporter of many local charities, raising millions of dollars for those in need. I know his incredible legacy will live on under the stewardship of the next generations of Crawfords.

We acknowledged the contributions of both and offered our sympathies to friends and families at our monthly Council meeting on Tuesday night.

At the meeting we also resolved to release for community feedback a draft masterplan for Manly’s Ivanhoe Park and two strategies which seek to foster a safe, inclusive and socially sustainable community. We endorsed a trial for The Strand at Dee Why, making it more pedestrian and bicycle friendly, and will ask the state government to review boating usage in Cabbage Tree Bay and to save Killarney Point as public open space.

Finally, don’t forget to grab tickets for the final days in our month-long Taste of the Beaches food and wine festival or join one of the many events we are hosting to mark World Environment Day.

Have a great weekend!

Friday 21 May

Massive shout out to all our volunteers this week!

It’s National Volunteer Week, time to celebrate the six million volunteers who dedicate over 600 million hours a year helping others.

At Council we are fortunate to have over 900 volunteers across 12 different services involved in things like regenerating our bushland, delivering Meals on Wheels, supporting big events, looking after our gardens, helping visitors, maintaining tracks and delivering library books.

Our thanks to every single one of you – your support is absolutely invaluable.

I know it works both ways too, with volunteers getting a lot of satisfaction out of the work they do. If you’d like to join us as a volunteer, it’s easy to register your interest here.

And make sure you check out our events calendar – there is so much going on at present. The new creative space at Mona Vale is open to explore this weekend with local artworks and craft. Taste of the Beaches is in full swing – don’t miss out on the finale event at the Palm Beach Wine Garden, tickets available now. Plus put Sat 5 June in you diary for the household solar expo and find out how you can save on average $1,412/year. 

Have a great weekend.

 

Friday 14 May

I was fortunate enough this week to be taken over the Harbour Trust’s new Draft Concept for North Head.

 
This is one of the most significant large pieces of public open space on the Beaches and is treasured for its natural and cultural heritage. The Concept, among other things, proposes to restore many of the historic buildings to their former glory, establish interpretive and environment education centres and a First Nations welcoming space. Make sure you see what’s planned and have your say

How inspiring are our environmental warriors here on the Northern Beaches? This week we honoured many passionate volunteers for their contributions in the 2021 Northern Beaches Eco Awards. From bush regenerators to wildlife carers, sustainability advocates and ocean protectors, our community is lucky to have you working so tirelessly to protect and enhance our precious environment. 

Special mention to Phil Colman who received the Individual Lifetime Achievement Award for his lifelong contribution to the preservation of our coastal environments and the education of residents and visitors. 
On a sad note, this week we lost a Northern Beaches champion. Swimming coach and all-round legend John ‘Jack’ Carter OAM passed away on Monday, aged 90, leaving an indelible legacy.
Jack spent most of his adult life mentoring thousands of children in swimming and water safety. Jack’s contribution to the community is enshrined in the ocean pool at Palm Beach which we named after him in 2018.
My sincere condolences go out to his family, relatives and friends. Long may he be remembered. 
 

Friday 7 May

I’m sure all your hearts sank as low as mine when you heard Northern Beaches venues listed as part the latest COVID alert this week.

We need to let NSW Health contact tracers do their job and take it as a reminder that the risk of COVID is still prevalent. We all know the drill – follow the restrictions, wear your mask, sanitise hands, get tested and isolate if unwell and keep using those QR codes to check in wherever you go.

In the meantime, get your entries in for the all-new Environmental Art & Design Prize Northern Beaches 2021. This is all about using art and design to celebrate what we love about the natural world, how to live more sustainably or shine a light on modern environmental challenges.

There’s a $40,000 prize pool across the nine categories encompassing a range of practices, from fashion to ceramics, video and painting. There is even a youth category.

So find out more and make sure you get your entry in by 21 June and stay tuned for more information on the host of in-studio events that will complement the prize program.

And with our month-long food and wine festival in full swing, don’t miss getting your tickets for Taste of the Beaches events, all being held in line with COVID safety measures.

Have a good weekend.

Friday 30 April 2021

It was a full Council meeting this week as we debated a range of initiatives for our community. Thanks to the many people who addressed the Council, speaking so passionately about the issues they care about.

We agreed to sponsor a new concert series planned for North Head, continuing to support the recovery of our area and back great events for our community. Stay tuned for more info.

We endorsed the draft budget for 2021/22 to go out for community feedback which features $106million of capital projects across the whole area. This includes around $65.2m on new assets such as surf clubs, new parks and public amenities and important infrastructure that protects our environment. 

It also includes $40.4m for renewing existing assets such as our extensive road and footpath program and maintaining all our assets to ensure they are kept to a high standard and save ratepayer dollars in the long term.

I’d encourage you to see what’s planned and have your say.

We also voted to call for an end to shark netting and instead use a combination of alternative shark mitigation measures like drone surveillance, smart lines, listening stations and deterrent devices that still prioritise swimmer safety and reduce the impact on other species like turtles and dolphins.

And we are progressing the possibility of creating new off leash dog areas at Palm Beach (North) and Mona Vale Beach (South). Our next steps are getting community input and progressing the environmental impact assessments.  

Finally, our month long food and wine festival, Taste of the Beaches, kicks off tomorrow with an exciting selection of events. Make sure you check the program and get your tickets.

Have a great weekend.

Friday 23 April

Lest we forget.

Anzac Day gives us all an opportunity to stop and reflect on the many who have served our country, and continue to serve, in wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations around the world.

While some of our usual services have had to change this year, there are still many ways you can mark the occasion.

Due to capacity restrictions, the Manly Warringah War Memorial State Park (Manly Dam) Dawn Service is invitation only but you can still watch it via the live stream from 5.30am.

RSL NSW is also encouraging people to again ‘Light up the Dawn’ from their own driveways, a great initiative that last year bought thousands of people together in spirit when being together in person wasn’t possible.

Many of our local RSL sub-branches and other community organisations are also holding their own ceremonies across the Beaches with COVID safety measures in place to protect their members and the broader community.

And while it’s a shame we couldn’t hold our usual Manly event, we have created a special light projection for Manly Town Hall which features the portraits of some of our own locals who have fallen in battle. You can see it after dark each night until Sunday.

I hope you will find a way to pay your respects on the day. More details of the local events can be found here.

Finally, VIEW Club have celebrated their 51st anniversary so congrats and thank you for all the amazing work you do for our community. You can find out more about their great work and join here. And Belrose Rural Fire Service just celebrated 70 years of serving our community, and three local Rotary Clubs that amalgamated in recent years to become “Upper Northern Beaches Rotary” has just celebrated 60 years of service above self in our local community. Thank you and a great reminder of the many volunteer organisations that support our local community.

Have a great weekend.

 

Friday 16 April

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.

Friday 9 April

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.

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