More NRL, Big Events Best Way To Boost Venue

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 20, 2016 9:45 am    Post subject: More NRL, Big Events Best Way To Boost Venue Reply with quote

More NRL, Big Events Best Way To Boost Venue
Central Coast Express Advocate
20 April 2016

THERE are fresh calls for more NRL games and major events to be held at the “under-utilised” Central Coast Stadium.

With rugby league matches at the world-class stadium dwindling in recent years, North Sydney Bears chief executive officer Greg Florimo has called for more games to be played at the region’s premier sporting venue.

Only one NRL match was slated for the stadium this year, with the Sydney Roosters having hosting the New Zealand Warriors at the beginning of April.

“It goes without saying that the venue should be the host of as many events as possible,” he said.

“It was built for an original purpose which was rugby league. Obviously the game here has had a number of challenges.

“It’s a shame there aren’t more games being played at the purpose-built venue; it’s definitely under-utilised.”

In a worrying trend, events at the venue have dried up since Gosford Council took over its management from John Singleton in 2014.

Major drawcards, including the Crusty Demons (2008, 2010), have not returned and concerts featuring some of Australia’s biggest acts — Killing Heidi, The Whitlams, Grinspoon and country acts Adam Brand, Gina Jeffreys and Lee Kernaghan (2000) — have not been seen again. The venue also hosted Carols by candlelight until 2013 but the event is now held at other local venues.

Gosford Mayor Lawrie McKinna said the council and the stadium management team met regularly with promoters but conceded the meetings often amounted to nothing.

He also said the council wanted to get more events to the venue in future.

“They (promoters) have come and asked about the venue but they never come to anything,” he said.

Cr McKinna also pointed the finger at the NRL’s top brass for the drop-off in games.

“The NRL’s funding model has changed,” he said.

“We’re actively out there. Something we definitely want to do is attract more events and games to the venue.”

Gosford Council chief executive Paul Anderson said securing events for the stadium had been difficult.

“Securing national and international events at the stadium is always challenging, especially given the often competing scheduling of different sporting codes and the financial incentives that other regions are able to offer,” he said.

“Since council took over the management and operation of the stadium in 2014, it has remained committed to maximising the potential of this vital facility.”

He said the council is looking to secure a number of high-profile events as early as this year.

“We are currently involved in a number of promising discussions to hopefully bring even more exciting sporting and other events to the stadium over the next year,” Mr Anderson said.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

More of the article ....
Gosford Council struggling to attract events and games to Central Coast Stadium
Peter Way
Central Coast Gosford Express Advocate
April 20, 2016 8:29am

Stadium Needs A Champion

THE $1.6 billion deal for the upgrade of major Sydney stadiums last week highlighted the lack of financial support for Central Coast Stadium.

After John Singleton’s second lease expired in 2014, the stadium returned to Gosford Council’s hands.

Former Central Coast Stadium managing director Monique Marks said Mr Singleton had tried unsuccessfully to bring an NRL team to the Central Coast.

“After 14 years of trying, John decided he’d put enough time and money into the stadium,” she said. “The Central Coast team didn’t quite work.”

Ms Marks said the region had missed out on major sporting and entertainment events due to the venue’s size and lack of facilities­.

“If we were to have a capacity of 30,000 to 35,000 you would get a lot of big acts,” she said. “There is no way a concert promoter, with the costs associated with putting on a concert, would come to Gosford with 20,000 seats.

“If we upgraded our stadium, basically any A-list concert act that goes to Sydney could come to Gosford.

“International sporting tournaments like the Asian Cup consider our venue a training facility because we don’t have the facilities they need. We have half the capacity for corporates that Newcastle has.”

Gosford Mayor Lawrie McKinna said the council hoped to attract significant events to the venue and was looking to upgrade facilities.

“We’re looking at hosting matches in the Rugby League World Cup next year,” he said. “We are also interested in hosting some of the Socceroos’ World Cup qualifiers.

“We’re seeking funding from Destination NSW and we’re hoping to attract some games against one of the smaller teams.”

The Express Advocate was unable to contact Sports Minister Stuart Ayres for a comment.


1999: Stadium was planned to open to be the home ground for the North Sydney Bears

1999: Construction delayed by inclement weather

2000: Stadium opens and is a home ground of NRL merged team Northern Eagles (North Sydney and Manly)

2000: Music acts Killing Heidi, Grinspoon, The Whitlams and Lee Kernaghan play at the venue for the Heatwave festival

2002: Manly take over NRL licence and take all games back to Brookvale Oval

2003: Hosted three group matches at the Rugby World Cup

2005: First A-League season; Central Coast Mariners make stadium home venue

2007: Central Coast overlooked for NRL expansion with expansion to Gold Coast and inclusion of expelled South Sydney Rabbitohs

2008: Hosts one rugby league international at the Rugby League World Cup between Scotland and Fiji

2008: Hosts Crusty Demons motocross spectacular event

2009: Outdoor cinema events at the stadium

2010: Venue’s 10-year celebrations with NRL double header (Sharks v West Tigers and Roosters v Parramatta)

2010: Crusty Demons motocross spectacular event

2010: Hosts rugby union Test match between Australia v England

2011: Venue hosts two Olyroos qualifying matches

2011: Carols by Candlelight

2013: Shute Shield rugby union

2014: John Singleton doesn’t renew stadium lease, leaving it in the hands of Gosford Council

2015: Sydney Roosters agree to play one match at the venue over coming years

2004-16: NRL matches hosted by Canterbury, Manly, Wests Tigers, South Sydney and Sydney Roosters (only one match scheduled for 2016)
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