For 46 years the Bulli Senior Citizens' Centre was buzzing as older members of the community caught up over a game of carpet bowls, table tennis or weekly morning teas.
But it's the end of an era for the committee that runs the venue after COVID and the declining health and age of members has meant they've had to call it a day.
"When I first went there, it was 2003 and they had Christmas parties where 60 people turned up," said former secretary Terry Cole.
"Towards the end it got to the stage where only a few people were playing carpet bowls or the only people that came. It has been coming for a long while, it is not possible to keep going."
The management committee has looked after the centre on behalf of Wollongong City Council since it was built in 1977 and offered a range of activities for older residents of the area. The committee has also overseen the hiring of the hall for regular bookings and private events.
But a report that went to the council this month said the declining health and age of members, as well as some moving away from the area, had resulted in a drop in participation.
The COVID-19 pandemic also had an impact, not only on membership but the activities offered at the Hospital Road building, and the centre's closure for refurbishment saw several activities - including table tennis and indoor bowls - relocate permanently.
Mr Cole said the centre had found it difficult to compete with other venues and organisations which provided table tennis, bowls and computer lessons for free.
The report to the council said the council's community facilities team had supported the committee to try and boost membership numbers.
But at the last annual general meeting in August, the committee was unable to form a quorum of five members, as required by its constitution.
At this month's ordinary meeting, Wollongong councillors voted unanimously to dissolve the committee and take on management of the centre.
The council will look at finding another community organisation to take over the management of the centre.
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