Preserving the past to head into a bright future

Meet the Football SA Museum Working Group (with FSA Board and Management representatives) | Preserving the past to head into a bright future.

Museum Group


Football in South Australia has a rich history, with reports of the game being played as far back as the 1890s. One hundred and thirty years later, relics of history are still being collected and stored, thanks to the general public, and the Football SA Museum Sub Committee and particularly its Museum Working Group.

In October 2013, the then Football Federation of SA Board created a Football Museum Committee with the purpose of promoting the recognition, preservation and promotion of our heritage and ensuring that the history of our game in South Australia could be presented to and accessed by the football community and general public.

The aims of the FSA Football Museum Committee

  1. To continue the establishment of a historical and curatorial function for the FSA commenced in 1993 with the establishment of a History initiative by the then Board of the SASF.  This initiative was intended to recover the sports history since its inception in 1903. 
  2. Develop activities of research and the publication of a compressive history, the development of a permanent research and collection function including the development and the establishment of a permanent museum. These aims were expected to ultimately provide: -
    1. Curatorial activities for the preservation of past records and memorabilia collected throughout the years by various stakeholders, members and participants of the Clubs & Associations.
    2. Provide on-going historical records management of the sports history, that would track and record ongoing events and future activities. 
    3. To provide a home for the display and management of memorabilia, Football honours such as the Hall of Fame, life membership and office bearers records.
    4. Other trophies and awards bestowed on Club Official, Players and Members from time to time.
    5. Establish a process where members of the Public and past players and officials can bequeath memorabilia and items of Football History to the FSA.
  3. To establish and maintain the management, planning and operating policies and procedures that will deliver points 1 & 2.
  4. To actively contribute and support the marketing and promotion of the FSA brand for the benefit of its members, fans and the broader football community.


Who are the Museum Working Group?

  • Denis Harlow OAM (Football SA Historian)
  • Tony Henshaw (Football SA Hall of Fame Chairman)
  • Tony Smith (Deputy Football SA Historian)
  • Keith Puyenbroek, (Administrator, Life Member of FSA & Past Chair of Para Hills SC)
  • Anne Jackson (Past Committee member of Para Hills SC)
  • Joe Janko (Life Member of FSA and lifetime photographer of SASF & FSA)

The group of dedicated volunteers meet every week on Monday to continue the large-scale task of curating and maintaining decades of football historical artefacts. The task at hand is a monumental one, with gems being unearthed on a weekly basis.

The journey began back in 1993, with the commencement of a History initiative by the then Board of the South Australian Soccer Federation (SASF). Their first project; to write a history book to celebrate the then up and coming 100 years of Football in SA. This led to the publication of Denis Harlow’s “History of Soccer in South Australia, 1902 – 2002.”

100 Years Book
Denis Harlow's "History Of Soccer In South Australia"

28 years later, the group’s efforts have outgrown their current space at Oakden, and will be moving its home in early March to a new bigger and brighter office space at the Croatian Sports Centre; a strategic move to be close to the State Centre for Football, which will be completed in 2022.

Museum Group

As part of the move, the FSA’s Museum Working Group is calling on the football family to bequeath any items that tell a part of the SA story. Items could include:

  • Medals and cups
  • Clothing
  • Photos
  • Newspaper cuttings
  • Match balls

Items to be donated can be delivered to Football SA Offices (Gate 5, Coopers Stadium) Monday – Friday 9 – 5 pm.  Alternatively, as of 15 March 2021, items will also be accepted by the Football SA Museum Working Group on Mondays between 10 – 4 pm at the Museum’s new home in the building to the south of the Croatian Sports Centre and Raiders’ playing pitch.

For bequeath enquiries, please contact Keith Puyenbroek at or call Matt Mays at Football SA on 0437149777. This must be done prior to the delivery of any items.

Football SA President Sam Ciccarello gives thanks to The Football Museum Working Group.

The FSA Football Museum will be an on-going, living project to tell a story of the history of football in South Australia. It’s incredibly important to acknowledge and celebrate our game and the people who have contributed to the progress of football in SA, the special moments in our sport and the contribution that football has had on our community.

The Football Museum Working Group, led by FSA Historian Denis Harlow OAM has dedicated years of work and effort into collecting, cataloguing, archiving and preparing items of interest and importance for preserving and some for exhibition in Museum display spaces to be included in the new State Football Centre.

Although their work is not yet complete – and it may well never be completed - on behalf of Football SA, I thank Denis Harlow, Tony Henshaw, Keith Puyenbroek, Tony Smith, Anne Jackson and Joe Janko for the significant and important work they have and continue to put into giving life to our Museum mission.