Football registrations across Northern NSW Football for 2016 are now open as clubs prepare for what is hoped to be another record season for the game.
Across its seven Member Zones in 2015, player numbers increased for both males and females in almost all age divisions from juniors through to seniors.
‘Since 2012 in Northern NSW, we have had over 10% growth in registered players for our traditional winter season alone, from 45,713 in 2012 to 50,322 for 2015,’ Northern NSW Football CEO David Eland said.
‘Add to this, ‘summer football’ figures, which includes Summer 6s and other special tournaments played across the off season and total registered players for 2015 amount to 60,420 up 18.15% on 2012’s total,’ Eland said.
Member Zones in Newcastle, Hunter and Lake Macquarie recorded an average growth of 4.37% on 2014’s figures.
Strongest segment growth occurred in Juniors (8-11 years) with a total increase across Northern NSW of 9.6%, with an average of 9% in both the Newcastle/Hunter Region as well as the Northern Member Zones.
‘The State wide figures are encouraging in that they reflect strong growth not only in metropolitan centres, but in regional areas as well,’ Eland said.
‘Our ability to manage this growth effectively has been achieved through two key elements. Firstly, organisational expansion that has included the establishment of 13 new positions since 2009, effectively doubling our capacity, plus the investment of $4m of Members Equity to secure an $11.3m state of the art ‘Home of Football’ for Northern NSW at Speers Point.’
‘Secondly the establishment of strategic partnerships with business, with investment by our key partners such as the Newcastle Permanent Building Society, our Official Partner in Community Football, driving cost reductions and delivery of enhanced services that provide a better football experience for all,’ he said.
‘The Newcastle Permanent’s support of Community Football has seen us effectively reduce registration fees, with the NNSWF component of Entry Level registration now 45% cheaper than it was four years ago.’
‘Integral to the Newcastle Permanent Community Football partnership is recognition of volunteers, coaches and others on the ground who play a vital role in delivering the game across Northern NSW. The Newcastle Permanent Community Football program, also provides over 9000 free footballs to entry level players across Northern NSW.’
‘The Newcastle Permanent’s investment makes up the lion’s share of over $2.4m of sponsorship across the next 3 years, which is further recognition of the high regard our sport is held in from not only players and participants, but the business community as well,’ Eland concluded.