Presidents Report – 2024


 A Year in Review – 2023

I would like to express my gratitude to members for their support throughout 2023, and welcome new members and guests.

A very big thank you to our Committee and subcommittee members for your endless hours of voluntary work helping to make this a special place, whilst preserving the look and feel of the rural residential lifestyle we all came here to enjoy.

The Committee acknowledges Andrew Johnston NB Council, Community Liaison Officerfor attending our meetings and keeping our Association at the forefront of Council activities.

2023 was a year of great sadness with the passing of our Vice President Bob White and Tom Bennett. As long-standing residents who gave a great deal of their time to this community, they will be missed.

Community events during 2023. These included:

    • Another successful evening learning astronomy and a rare chance to see the planets through professional telescopes.

    • The official opening of the Mary Newlinds Reserve and installation of interpretive signage.

    • The Community and Duffys Forest Rural Fire Brigade (DFRFB) Trivia Night, a fun filled evening enjoyed by many.

    • Clean Up Australia Day, coordinated by Ron Junghans

    • National Tree Planting Day at Waratah Park with 400 tube stock donated by Marina Grassecker of Harvest Seeds & Native Plants and planted by volunteers, many of them children.

    • ANZAC Day and Remembrance Day services. Both were very moving events of remembrance shared by all ages, with many of our schools being actively involved.

    • The annual DFRA Christmas Partyto support the DFRFB. which enabled DFRA to make a substantial donation to the Brigade. Deb Frack is to be congratulated for her tireless energy in single handedly organising this event and fundraising effort. Deb is not standing for the position of Social Secretary this year and has left big shoes to fill. We are a fortunate community to have talented residents Andrew and Helen McLennan who with fellow band members from Rickety Kate entertained us with live music, and Simon Docherty who took us by surprise as a fabulous support vocalist.  Unfortunately, the evening was cut short by thunderstorms.

Community Bridle Trail

Supporting the equestrian industry and the economic and lifestyle benefits it brings to our community has always been a priority for DFRA. 2023 was a very busy year with a big focus on reinstatement and repairs of the historic Community Bridle Trail (CBT). The engagement process has seen much behind the scenes work with Paul Moore and Scott Van Trienan Asset Management Officer NBC Park & Assets NBC. In conjunction with Scott, we have now scoped a number of the high-risk areas along the 7 kilometre stretch of the trail and these have been noted in the NBC CBT Action Plan and presented to the residents of Duffys Forest and Terrey Hills in August 2023.  Council has not provided funding to undertake all the works required. A $5000 grant for CBT works has been provided through Jeffery Qinn, ALP candidate for Pittwater in 2023. Works will be prioritised and completed in stages as more funding becomes available.

DFRA has worked with Renee Sands NBC Team Leader of Streetscapes to ensure Council manage the mowing and clearing of the CBT on a 4 monthly basis.

it is important that residents living along the CBT support the reinstatement and maintenance of the CBT and. assist by removing obstructions and avoiding blocking the trail with parked cars, trailers, and horse floats. Residents should also consider the unintended consequences of planting vegetation which once established will obstruct the trail and force riders onto the road.

NB Council is working with THPA to have the many trailers moved from the Mona Vale Rd end of Cooyong Rd to reinstate the CBT for everyone’s safety. Currently, ponies and pedestrians share the footpath.

DFRFB Fire Station

The Community has really enjoyed their return to the Fire Station for Community events and our quarterly meetings.

 DFRA has supported a recruitment drive for Community Fire Unit (CFU) members alongside the DFRFB.

This community involvement in the Station has greatly contributed to Duffys Forest having the largest membership of Community Fire Fighters in the NSW RFS. I would like to thank all those community members who joined this year and who will assist in operating the RFS CFU Trailers. The trailers have been strategically located along the outer fringe of the rural residential area. We hope to encourage those residents of Terrey Hills rural residential properties to join the DFRFB CFU Teams in 2024.

After some major glitches causing a complete shutdown to the DFRA website Angie Beale has rebuilt and taken over its management. We thank her for her generosity and many hours of work.

The review of the Association’s resident database has been completed and will require ongoing maintenance. Any residents who are not on the database and wish to receive notifications of meetings and events are invited to have their names added.

Development Applications

The Committee continues to review DAs such as commercial developments, schools, health facilities etc, which impact the amenity of this suburb, and which have the potential to restrict flow of traffic or supply of services to this area. This is done in consultation with THPA. It is noted that notwithstanding endless hours of volunteer discussion we still see the continued unsafe traffic management of Myoora Rd with the ongoing construction of the private hospital.

The Committee seeks to ensure that Council notifies potentially affected residents of controversial development applications pertaining to gun noise. We have only recently become aware of DAs to expand the St Ives Pistol Club and significantly increase hours of operation at the Peninsula Firearm Academy.

Most residential development now bypasses Council and is approved under Complying Development legislation with little if any notification to neighbours. If neighbours have concerns, we ask them to take this up with Council directly or the private certifiers responsible for the approval.


Despite meetings with NB Council, it continues to demonstrate a failure to ensure compliance in relation to environmental issues such as vegetation clearing and land filling. Council acknowledges that its systems are deficient partly due to lack of staff and partly due to legislation failing to grant it appropriate powers.


Council has been undertaking a variety of reviews to bring together the current local planning controls to create one new planning framework that will guide and manage future development in the Northern Beaches. The process began in 2020 with  release of the Local Strategic Planning Statement – Towards 2040 followed by the Northern Beaches housing strategy, LEP discussion paper, draft Northern Beaches Environmental review  and Conservation Zone review. Despite a myriad of studies, it seems unlikely following a change in state government that a new draft LEP/DCP will be gazetted within the proposed 2023/24 timeline or even progress to formal exhibition for public comment.

Waratah Park Bush Care Group

Jenny Harris continues to coordinate bush care at Waratah Park and DFRA would be remiss to not acknowledge the tireless enthusiasm and support of Peter Staff who spends many hours at the Park, has raised more than $3000 in the recycled bottle scheme to support the bush work at the Park and was the recipient of a Community Volunteer Award from Dr Sophie Scamps.  The project encourages all residents to support the environmental objectives, particularly on National Tree Day which provides a great opportunity to introduce young children to the importance of care for our country.

Thank you,

Wendy Smallwoo