Club history

A Brief History

Bilgola Beach is nestled in between Avalon and Newport Beach in the picturesque region of Sydney’s Northern Beaches. The Bilgola Surf Life Saving Club was formed in the summer of 1949 when a small band of locals commenced patrols on Bilgola Beach. At the end of the 1999/2000 season the Bilgola Club celebrated 50 years of service to the local community.

The Clubhouse

In 1950 work commenced on the clubhouse, which was constructed of sandstone. The original clubhouse had a hall with boat shed and toilet facilities. An early picture of the club is shown below.

The clubhouse has under gone many renovations over the years with a major addition and rebuild completed in 2003. The facilities include new and upgraded toilets, Gymnasium, BBQ areas and glazed undercover areas, expanded hall and bar areas as well as junior clubrooms, which are used for training purposes.

Surf Life Saving

The Bilgola Surf Life Saving Club has been involved in many developments in the surf life saving movement over the years. Notable is the first trials of the torpedo tube and the introduction of synthetic lines on the now obsolete surf reel. Many dramatic rescues have been performed over the years with many awards being presented to members of this proud club.

Bilgola and Surfboats

Bilgola has always been a surfboat club and members have since the very early days rowed and competed in surfboat races.The first Bilgola surfboat was an old double-ended craft affectionately known as “Irene”. Irene was so named because every time they caught a wave it was “good night Irene”.

In 1997 The Bilgola club achieved a feat that had only happened twice. In the national championships in Kurrawa Queensland, Bilgola had a crew in 4 of the 5 division finals and went on the win the Junior Championship and the prestigious open Championship. Only twice previously in the history of the national championships had a club won more than 1 division.

In the 2002/2003 season the Bilgola Club won the Champion Surfboat Club of Australia This prestigious honour is run in selected carnivals all over the country on a point score system over all of the 5 divisions from juniors to the open and women’s.

In 2005 the Bilgola Gold Women’s Open Crew backed up for their second consecutive Australian Gold medal. In 2006 the Bilgola Gold Women’s Open Crew won the World Championships in Lorne and in the same year at the Australian Titles in Kurrawa, two Bilgola Junior crews, and the Under 21 Colts started in the Australian Final, with the Colts taking out the Bronze medal.

Nippers

The nippers or junior division was introduced in 1988 to train the local children in life saving techniques. The first year 55 children were enrolled to start a tradition at Bilgola that has grown with over 400 local children coming down to the Beach on Sunday mornings in summer.

Our future

The Bilgola Surf Life Saving Club is looking towards the future and still proudly serves our local community.
Bilgola SLSC always need more members to get involved in the club. So please join us.