A Brief History for the Period Prior to 1979/80
The St George Little Athletics Centre was formed at a public meeting chaired by the Mayor of Kogarah, Ald Frank Baker, at Kogarah Council Chambers in December 1971. A steering committee was formed with the aim of recruiting members and commencing competition as soon as possible. Committee members elected on the night included David Dickinson (chairman), Fred Scott (secretary) and Jean Thornthwaite (treasurer). Peter Williams was also a committee member.
Two registration days were held at Bell Park, South Hurstville in January 1972 which resulted in 98 registrations. The first competition day was held at Carss Park on the soccer fields adjacent to the swimming pool. Even though the area was large enough for an athletic track, the condition of the ground left a lot to be desired. The goal posts were still in place and mounds of topsoil littered the area making it difficult to locate a 100 m straight track, let alone a decent circular track. Nevertheless, two days of successful competition were conducted before the Southern Metropolitan Zone Championships were held at Waratah Park, Sutherland. The Zone Coordinator offered late entries for St George athletes because of our late establishment, a gesture which was eagerly accepted. It is a great credit to our first group of athletes at such short notice that they performed creditably at the Zone Championships and went on to win two gold medals, two silver medals and two bronze medals in individual events at the State Championships, together with a first place in the 4×100 m relay.
Evatt Park at Lugarno was chosen for the home ground in the 1972-73 season. This was a very large area containing three football fields and two netball fields so there was ample room for our activities. In time we had a circular track with as many lanes as we cared to mark out, two long jump pits, two shot put circles and two discus circles.
Sunday afternoon competitions were held at Evatt Park for many years, until a desire for a change to Friday evenings saw a move to Jubilee Oval for the 1978-79 season. This was far from successful and lasted just the one season. A move was then made to Olds Park, Penshurst, which has been the home ground ever since.
Contributed by Fred Scott, Founder of St George Little Athletics Centre