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Whale Beach SLSC first women to patrol 1980

Celebrating Women in Surf Life Saving - 2020

July 1 2020 marks the 40th anniversary of women's involvement in active surf lifesaving duties.

Surf Life Saving NSW is celebrating this important anniversary and the achievements of women over the past 40 years.

Help us recognise our trailblazing women by sharing your stories, photographs and video.


To help celebrate the 40th anniversary of woman as active surf lifesavers, we are calling for stories, photos and video of trailblazing women in the Surf Life Saving movement. 

We will showcase their inspirational stories throughout the 2020/21 season and create an archive for future generations. 

With your help, we will celebrate their achievements over the past 40 years. 

Four of the first official women to patrol our beaches were welcomed at Whale Beach SLSC in 1980.
(Sara & Jill Peters, Marion Robb and Tina Gowing)

Excerpt from Evolution of an Icon

"So it was that on 1 July 1980, the SLSA finally admitted women as full members. The entrenched attitudes of many male members and their clubs had through force of reason, expediency, simple political will and clout, been persuaded that women could save lives, participate in competitions and administration, and carry out all the responsibilities and enjoyments of surf lifesaving just as well as men."

Nobbys SLSC first female IRB Crew, 1994/95
(Kristen Ross, Julie Farmer and Ula Dalton nee Callen)


Here's How You Can Help Celebrate

  • Email us your stories below about the women who inspired change in the Surf Life Saving movement
  • Send us your photos and videos below or via WeTransfer to
  • Post photos on Facebook, lnstagram and Twitter using the hastag #WomenInSLS
  • Send photographs, film and newspaper articles to SLSNSW - PO Box 307, Belrose 2085 (we will digitise and return)

Share Your Stories of Trailblazing SLS Women

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Files must be less than 2 MB.
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Files must be less than 2 MB.
Allowed file types: gif jpg jpeg png pdf doc docx ppt pptx xls xlsx xml.