Council History

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Explore inspiring articles, discover events, connect with locals and learn more about Coffs Harbour City Council.

Summer Reading Club

Summer Reading Club

It's on again - register now for Coffs Harbour City Libraries Summer Reading Club...

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Draft Driving on Beaches Policy

Draft Driving on Beaches Policy

Have your say on a new policy on beach driving...

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Swim Between The Flags

Swim Between The Flags

Stay safe at the beach this summer by swimming between the red and yellow flags at patrolled beaches...

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Latest News

Ambassadors

New Year New Look

A whole new nature-based experience and education tour programme will debut in 2019 with paid opportunities for guides and fresh new experiences...

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Airlines

Future of Airport Management Progresses

The possibility of leasing the running of Coffs Harbour Regional Airport to a company experienced in the commercial aviation industry has moved forward...

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Rural Lands

Rural Lands – Future Uses

Council is currently reviewing and updating its Local Growth Management Strategy – a key document that governs how we plan...

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Council History

​​Local government began in our region in 1906 when the Dorrigo Shire was established. Thomas O’Neill was the first Shire President, Mr WJ Hawthorne was Shire Clerk, and the Council office was in Mr Hawthorne’s rooms in South Grafton.

At that time, the shire extended from Dorrigo in the west to Coffs Harbour in the east and northward to the Clarence River. The population of the town of Coffs Harbour totalled only 600 people, living in 132 houses.

With Dorrigo Shire covering an enormous area, the decision was made in 1913 to divide it in two. The North Western section became Nymboida Shire, while Dorrigo Shire now encompassed Dorrigo, Coramba, Coffs Harbour, Woolgoolga and Glenreagh. The headquarters were established at Coramba.

As the town of Coffs Harbour grew, there was increased lobbying for it to be made a municipality in its own right - with the addition of Sawtell from Bellingen Shire. By 1951 the Dorrigo Shire Council headquarters had moved to Coffs, on the site today known as 218 Harbour Drive.​

The new shire of "Coffs Harbour" was gazetted on 30 November 1956 and took in the area from just north of Repton up to Pipe Clay Beach and west to Brooklana. The first Coffs Harbour Shire President was Councillor Harry Bailey.

Purpose-built Council Chambers, staff offices and library were completed alongside a Civic Centre (Town Hall) in Vernon Street in February 1964. Keeping pace with the growth of the town, a new Council administrative building was constructed on the corner of Castle and Coff Streets in 1985. This remains Council’s main headquarters.

In May 1987, the humble Shire of Coffs Harbour was finally proclaimed a City, with Councillor Bernie Malouf as its first Mayor.

The most recent change to the Local Government Area was in 2004, when the communities of Corindi and Red Rock were welcomed into the City of Coffs Harbour after a northern boundary adjustment.