Freo's View


Posted in city of fremantle, fremantle society,, heritage by freoview on December 9, 2016

To have integrity one needs to avoid all spin and bending of the truth, but disappointingly the Fremantle Society prefers to ignore facts, as a letter in today’s Fremantle Herald by FS president John Dowson shows.

Dowson claims the announcement a few weeks ago by WA Heritage Minister Albert Jacob of the West End Conservation Area listing on the State Heritage list was a “secret event”. It was so secret that all the media were there, and the Fremantle Society president was also there, and even I was invited to Kakulas Sisters for the announcement. I don’t believe it qualifies as a secret event when it was on the TV  and radio stations that night and widely reported in the print and on-line media.

Dowson does not like the boundaries of the WECA gold rush period and blames Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt for reducing the West End Conservation Area to accommodate developers, but as a former councillor Dowson well knows that council makes democratic decisions and not the Mayor on his own.

The lament by the FS president that Arthur Head is not included is irrelevant because Arthur Head in its entirety, including Kidogo Arthouse(the former kerosene store) is already on the State Heritage list, so adding it to the WECA would make no difference.

To have a semblance of credibility one should not manipulate the truth.

Roel Loopers

7 Responses

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  1. freoview said, on December 11, 2016 at 10:17 am

    Valid points Robert and exactly showing the difficulties authorities have in defining an certain area of hertage significance.
    Where does one stop, what does one include? And of course experts disagree about it as well.

    Streets are often boundaries, so that is not the problem, but shoud the area have gone through to William Street, but why then stop there and not include, the Woolstores, Boys School, etc.

    To many it would have made sense to include the Warders Cottages in the world hertage listing of Fremantle Prison, but those in charge did not agree.

    I am realistic and pragmatic about life and we now have to live with the boundaries set by State Government and keep fighting to protect Fremantle from inappropriate and ugly development.



  2. Pete said, on December 11, 2016 at 8:46 am

    Yep ! … The mall is ugly and needs a total new look … paving, shade, seating etc … perhaps a small central fountain … perhaps a long central pergola … perhaps an avenue of smallish shade trees all the same size … parhaps some direction from Council on cafe seating.
    At the moment its very hotch potch !


  3. Robert said, on December 10, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    You have not answered the question. A promenade architect of the day, Cavanagh. Building started in !906 so the planning pre dates that and Mannings after arriving in 1880 were the biggest land holders in Fremantle. Money came from what And Western Australia’s population Had peeked. Where had the money come from Where had the wealth come from?
    The Kalgoorlie event in particular, following the June 1893 discovery of alluvial gold at the base of Mount Charlotte by Irish prospectors Paddy Hannan, Tom Flanagan and Dan O’Shea, saw a massive population increase and ultimately, brought great wealth to the state. Capital works, including roads and railways and in 1896, construction of the ambitious Goldfields Water Supply Scheme, came about on the back of the gold rushes.

    The population in Western Australia in 1891 was 49,782. By 1895 it had doubled to 100,515, and by 1901 was
    I have not mentioned Arthur head or the town Hall etc. The latter Tut-tut to old.
    AS for the The State Heritage Office . Isn’t Pettitt on the board The Mayor who is OK with turning historic buildings into something else. Disney Land.
    Walk down the mall and at under the Awning level and Not a Historic Ok look at the awnings . There all so af a far cry from original .
    But who cares a rats. Shame shame


  4. freoview said, on December 9, 2016 at 7:20 pm

    Robert is has been expressed by many experts, including the State Heritage Office, that the West End Conservation Area is based around the gold rush period of the 1890s and that Arthur Head, the Townhall, etc. pre-date that period.



  5. Robert said, on December 9, 2016 at 5:51 pm

    Could you speculate why one side only of market st is worthy of this special West End listing?
    It wouldn’t be that an important person has an application to have his way with the Manning’s buildings with some (lovely) junk on top. Now would it?


  6. freoview said, on December 9, 2016 at 3:49 pm

    Absolutely no defamation or bitterness John Dowson. A media conference is not a secret event!

    I am not part of the media but was invited, presumably so I could let my blog readers know the good news.

    And what about you accusing the Mayor of being a dictator who makes decisions such as the boundaries of the WECA on his own, when you well know that Council makes these decisions and that the officers and Heritage Architect recommended this to Council? You don’t agree with me that that is bending the truth?

    You also previously accused the Mayor of being responsible for the awful building that got approved next to St Pat’s and the Australia Hotel, when in fact Fremantle Council had rejected the proposal, but it got approved by a State agency.

    Roel Loopers


  7. John Dowson said, on December 9, 2016 at 1:43 pm

    Mr Loopers, you have gone beyond your normal bitterness into defamation. You accuse me of lying. The truth is that the announcement to the media, of which you are one, about the West End listing was a closely guarded secret that very few, except the mayor, Cr Hume and Lyn McLaren attended. Those who had worked on this issue for many years were not invited. I was tipped off and thus turned up.

    Do publish this and do apologise.


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