History of Little Athletics

Little Athletics evolved, like most voluntary community organisations, through the mind and conscience of one man. Trevor Billingham followed the pattern set by many pioneers in the field of community service. He recognised a need and introduced an idea designed to meet that need.

On an October day in 1963 three boys turned up at an athletics meeting in Geelong. They were ready to compete. On approaching an official they were told that they were too young to take part. That official was Trevor Billingham.

The disappointment, evident in the boys, left a marked impression on his mind. The thought was forgotten; it came alive again several months later. At a coaching clinic designed for secondary school students it was noted that the majority of children were of primary school age. Reminded of his earlier experience, Trevor Billingham had an idea. The answer to the need expressed in the children would be a simple Saturday morning competition.

On the first Saturday of October 1964, he met with a small group of children on a Geelong oval. They took part in a short program of running events.

From that simple beginning, athletics for Under 12 boys and girls developed at a phenomenal rate.


Little Athletics created tremendous interest; by 1967 the Victorian Little Athletics Association was formed.  Australian Little Athletics Union was formed in Perth on the 31 March 1972. Victoria, New South Wales, Northern Territory & Western Australia were the founding members. Victorian Little Athletics Association now has over 22,000 members competing

History of Geelong Little Athletics Clubs

The inaugural Geelong Little Athletics season of 1964/65 was for schools only. The schools who took part over that first summer were; Chanel, Chilwell, Fyans Park, Matthew Flinders, Newtown, North Shore, Oberon High, Our Lady’s, Saint Augustine’s, Saint Josephs, Saint Patricks, Saint Roberts, Saint Thomas, Tate Street, South Geelong and Warrnambool.

The following year clubs were organised. Listed below are all the clubs affiliated with the Geelong Little Athletics Centre, with foundation clubs marked in italics:

Barwon Heads/Ocean Grove       1972/73 to present

(changed name to Ocean Grove/Barwon Heads 1987/88)

Boundary Road                             1966/67 (then merged with Tate Street)

Chanel                                          1965/66

Chilwell                                        1965/66 to present

East Geelong                                1968/69 to present

Geelong Guild                              1965/66 to present

Grovedale                                    1975/76 to present

Lara                                              1965/66

Leopold                                         1966/67 to 1967/68 then 1975/76 to present

Manifold                                       1969/70 to present

Newcomb                                     1967/68 to 1997/98

Our Lady’s                                    1967/68 to 1968/69 (then became Manifold)

Peninsula                                      1977/78 to present

Roslyn                                           1965/66 to 1978/79

Sacred Heart                                1965/66 to 1975/76

Saint Augustine’s                         1965/66 to 1967/68 (then became St Bernard’s)

Saint Bernard’s                            1968/69 to 1995/96

Saint Catherine’s                         1966/67 to 1969/70 (then merged with St Bernard’s)

Saint Joseph’s                              1965/66 to 1987/88

Saint Margaret’s                         1966/67 to 1969/70

Saint Patrick’s                              1965/66 to 1972/73

South Barwon                              1965/66 to present

Tate Street                                  1965/66 to 1967/68 (then changed name to East Geelong)

Torquay                                        1975/76 to 1980/81

Whittington                                 1980/81 to 1992/93

YMCA                                           1965/66 to 1995/96






The Nine affiliated Clubs of Geelong Little Athletics: