Beacon Hill Youth Club
History of the Beacon Hill Youth Club
Beacon Hill Youth Club (the Club) was constituted to promote sporting activity for children and their families in the Beacon Hill area.
The Club was founded in 1964 by a group of parents whose boys had been attending the Bjelke-Petersen Physical Culture classes at Allambie. These parents approached the Beacon Hill War Memorial Trust to use the ‘large hall’ in the building that then stood on the current site. This building was preceded by a timber building a little up the hill, where the present Garden of Remembrance now stands. This little building was administered jointly by the Beacon Hill RSL Sub-Branch and the Progress Association. These two organisations also took on the responsibility for the original brick building which now forms the downstairs level of the current building.
Subsequently, it was to these two organisations that a request was made for use of the large hall for PE classes for the 30 or so local boys, commencing at the beginning of Term 2 in May 1964. In those days there were three terms in the school year. Later in 1964 the inaugural meeting of interested parents decided to form the Beacon Hill Youth Club. Now we're over 50 years in service.
The original Executive Committee of the Club comprised:
President – Mr Bernie O’Connor;
Secretary – The Late Mr Ron Oughtred;
Treasurer – The Late Mr Ben Love OAM
In 1965, outdoor activities of Soccer (now called Football), Junior Rugby League Football, Netball and Hockey were added, and girls were taking part in the Gym (formerly called PE) classes. A total of 85 families were enrolled.
By 1968, with an increase to 900 active members, demand far outstripped space so a new Hall was to be built over the existing building as a second storey. The new building work, at a cost of $90,000, was funded by a grant sought from the NSW Government by the Committee of the Beacon Hill Youth Club and from the proceeds of a raffle run by the Club in which tickets sold for 20c each and the prize was a brand new Mini-Minor. Although the Committee had 'done all the leg work' and raised considerable money, when they asked for the new building to incorporate the Club’s name and be administered by the Beacon Hill Youth Club, the completed building was named by the NSW Government as the Beacon Hill War Memorial Community Centre and the Youth Club was granted peppercorn-rental for use of new rooms. At the same time, our two playing fields were, quite literally, being carved out of the actual 'Beacon Hill', the lower hillside of which had by then been exhausted as a quarry.
By 1970 Hall activities included Asthmatic Classes, Gymnastics, Judo, Table Tennis, Squash, Dramatic Classes, Basketball, Soccer, League, Cricket and Athletics, with approximately 1,500 children taking part, mostly run by our Club. A 1979 potted history lists School of Theatre, Gymnasium, Table Tennis, Ju-Jitsu, Badminton, Weight Lifting, Chess, St John Ambulance Brigade, Hockey, Cricket, League, Netball, Soccer, Tennis, Ladies Auxiliary, Pentacle Group and a sponsorship of 2 children through World Vision.
The Club experienced continued growth over the years, peaking in 1979 with 1,019 member families, fluctuating over the next 20 years, then experiencing incremental growth to over 1,200 member families we have now. We try to keep our fees to a reasonable level but are hamstrung by Council and Sports fee structures. We remain a not-for-profit organisation and over 2,000 players/supporters/officials benefit from our being a 'Family Friendly Club'.
After 53 years at the Beacon Hill War Memorial Community Centre, the Club relocated to Brookvale in 2017 as the Community Centre closed for extensive renovations.
The Club’s Constitution sets out a Committee to oversee the Club’s activities.
The Club is an incorporated association, complying with the Associations Incorporation Act 2009. Incorporation establishes the Club as a legal entity, providing financial protection for Committee members from Club liabilities.