Northern Territory Future Directions of Umpiring Review 


AFL Northern Territory (AFLNT) is the peak body for Australian Rules Football in the Northern Territory (NT). Governing all leagues, development and talent programs from grassroots Auskick to senior NT Thunder football.

AFLNT governs a total of ten (10) leagues across the NT;

  • Barkly Australian Football League

  • Big Rivers Australian Football League

  • Central Australian Football League

  • Elcho Island Football League

  • Groote Eylandt Football League

  • Lajamanu Football League

  • Maningrida Football League

  • Northern Territory Football League (NTFL)

  • Tiwi Islands Football League

  • Wadeye Football League

It is the perceived view of AFLNT and the wider football community that umpiring within the NT has been meandering for some time and in order to improve the quality of umpiring a full review is required in order to produce a strategy for NT umpiring over the next five (5) year period.

Scope and purpose of the Review

This review will evaluate umpiring across the Northern Territory with respect to six (6) main areas of focus:

  • The effectiveness of education, coaching and feedback structures to support umpires

  • The quality of the environment and culture of the umpiring groups

  • The level and quality of recruitment and retention

  • The resourcing and structure of umpiring in the NT (internal & support staff) 

  • The quality and relevance of talent umpires pathways (academies, NEAFL & VFL W), and,

  • The role of the NTFLUA in the support of umpires & working relationships with AFLNT

The purpose of this document is to set out the framework of the review to be conducted, the methodologies for data collection and the intended outcomes of the review. 

Application of this evaluation will enable recommendations to be made as follows:

  • What level of education, coaching and feedback is required to support the umpiring groups?

  • How do we ensure the environment and culture of the umpiring group supports retention of umpires?

  • What is the required number of umpires to support each league in the NT & what level of recruitment and retention is required each year to sustain the competitions?

  • What is the ideal management and coaching structure for umpiring in the NT?

  • Do the current talented pathways programs support the development of talented umpires and what changes (if any) are required?

  • What role should the NTFLUA play?

Northern Territory Future Direction of Umpiring Overview 2019 - 2023

If you love footy, you’ll love being an umpire.

Not only do you get the best view of the action, you also get paid for the privilege.

It helps keep you fit, you get to be part of a team and you can learn leadership skills that you can take with you when you walk off the ground. They call it a job, but really, whether you’re a field, boundary or goal umpire, it might just be the most fun you can have at work.

Umpiring is a great way to be involved in football while keeping fit and earning money. Everyone over the age of 12 male or female are welcome to take part in umpiring.

Umpiring Australian Rules football is an integral part of our great game and it is AFLNT’s role to promote, develop and manage umpiring within the Northern Territory.

The leagues that AFLNT are responsible for supplying the umpires for are: 

Thunder Juniors


Tennant Creek
Barkly FL

Alice Springs
Thunder Juniors




AFLNT are looking to recruit umpires, no matter what the region, if you are interested in umpiring keeping fit, making new friends and earning some money, please register your interest at