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Active Recreation Strategy

This page contains information about Council working together with Sport New Zealand and Sport Northland in developing an Active Recreation and Sport Strategy.
Updated: 22/08/2018 11:43 a.m.
Waipu Cycleway image.

What does "Active Recreation" mean to you?

What is your favourite sport? What do you like to do for fun, fitness and wellbeing? What would you like to see more of in our District and how can Council help with that?

These are just some of the questions that Whangarei District Council, together with Sport New Zealand and Sport Northland will be asking our community across our District over the next month.

Whangarei District Council, with our partners, Sport New Zealand and Sport Northland are developing an Active Recreation and Sport Strategy.

What is active recreation?

For this strategy, we mean something you do for your fitness or for fun that gets your heart rate up like, waka ama, rugby, dance, bowls or skateboarding. Over 76 sports and activities are included in the scope of this project!


We want to identify and prioritise the needs for active recreation and sport across our District. We want to make sure that our communities and visitors have the right spaces and facilities in the right places. This includes places that are fit for purpose and adaptable for our growing and changing District.

The strategy will inform and guide the region’s investment into recreation and sport. The strategy will inform the development of Council’s 2021-2031 Long Term Plan.

Schools, sports organisations and groups will be able to leverage off the strategy when making applications to funders.

Brent Eastwood, CE of Sport Northland says "This is a District strategy which is the first step within a wider regional review, so the work for this District based strategy is also refreshing the region."

"This project has national backing and is within a national structure. When other Districts are ready, Sport NZ and Sport Northland will be ready to work alongside you", said Jamie Delich of Sport New Zealand.

Through engaging with our community recently on the Walking and Cycling Strategy and the Long Term Plan, Council has heard things like:

  • how much our community really values walking and cycling paths, trails, tracks. The actions from this strategy will align with other Council strategies;
  • opportunities in specific areas such as Ruakaka and Bream Bay, Kamo, Tikipunga, Whangaruru;
  • how we can add value for our community to existing places such as boat ramps and user-friendly toilets.

Sue Hodge, Manager of Council’s Parks and Recreation department and member of the Project Working Group, says "We want to know what the needs are for all of our community – from our youngest members to our oldest."

Surveys have been sent out to schools, sports organisations and groups and distributed widely to our community. We want to know what the needs are for all of our community – from our youngest members to our oldest. The survey links are listed below.

We are now seeking your input via an online survey.

Please click on the survey link below or copy it to your web browser, to complete the relevant survey for yourself or your household.


Organisations and Groups:


What’s the purpose of the Strategy?

The purpose of the Strategy is to identify and prioritise the future sport and active recreation needs for our District. When completed it will guide the District’s future investments in sport and active recreation, to help all residents and visitors to lead active, healthy, enjoyable lifestyles.

Who are the key partners involved?

The key partners are Whangarei District Council, Sport New Zealand and Sport Northland.

What sport and active recreation activities are covered?

The strategy will cover a wide range of sport and active recreation from traditional structured sports e.g. rugby, netball, basketball, hockey etc., to other sports and active recreation e.g. skateboarding, waka ama, mountain biking, horse riding, rowing, surfing and newer activities like Ultimate Frisbee, Futsal and Parkour.

When will it be completed?

April 2019

Will I/my group get the chance to provide input?

Most certainly! We will start shortly by circulating three specific surveys: one for our residents, one for schools and one for our groups and sports organisations. These will be circulated through your networks, in our Council News, social media like Facebook and also on our Council website.

Following the surveys, we will be hosting forums and interviews. The surveys will also be made available online and at Council offices.

Our group/club doesn’t own our facilities, can we still be involved?

You sure can – anyone who lives in the District can have a say by completing the survey. Facility users and non-users are just as important as facility providers.

Our group/club has plans/ideas for our own facility improvements – how does that fit in?

It’s all part of the big picture and we want to see it all! Tell us:

  • what improvements are planned/needed
  • who is involved and supports the improvements
  • what the benefits will be and who will benefit
  • potential funding sources
  • how the improvements would contribute to overall active recreation in Whangarei District.

Who do we contact to make sure our group receives the online survey?

Contact Bernadete Aperahama on 09 470 3038 or email


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