Passmore Reserve in the Manly Warringah Football Association and home to St Augustines will now have sports lighting for the first time ever after the Northern Beaches Local Planning Panel approved the installation of lighting at the reserve.
The $250,000 lighting project will include eight brand new light poles which will light three fields and allow evening training and competition matches to occur.
Manly Warringah FA is the largest football association in NSW according to 2021 registration data with almost 20,000 winter participants. Approximately 7% of the Northern Beaches population is a registered football participant.
The Northern Beaches Sportsground Strategy in 2017 identified a drastic shortfall in playing fields across the northern beaches.
Similar to the Northern Beaches Sportsground Strategy, the NSW Football Infrastructure Strategy identifies football as the largest sport in the state with insufficient infrastructure to cater for current or future demand.
“The lighting at Passmore Reserve would allow an extra 20 hours of training per week on two and a half fields,” said MWFA CEO David Mason.
“That equates to 50 hours of training hours for teams that are currently squeezing onto other pitches and putting further strain on Council resources to maintain those overused fields.
“Additional training capacity at Passmore Reserve will take the pressure off other nearby fields, improving the quality of those sportsfields.”
While participation capacity at some existing venues can be increased, many locations particularly across Metropolitan Sydney, are at maximum capacity.
Provision of sports lighting is a key infrastructure requirement to build participation and allows football infrastructure to be used at its maximum capacity.
The lighting at Passmore Reserve is due to be completed prior to the 2022 winter season.