Freo's View

ARTHUR’S HEAD MESS CLEANED UP

Posted in arthur head, city of fremantle, local government, roundhouse, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on January 14, 2020

 

Arthur's Head

 

Well done, City of Fremantle for cleaning up the mess and the large weeds at the Arthur’s Head carpark, but it should not have taken a blogger though to make you aware of it.

Roel Loopers

ARTHUR’S HEAD NEGLECT A DISGRACE

 

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The fenced off carpark below the Roundhouse now looks like this. Disgraceful!

 

I reported previously about the state of neglect at the fenced off carpark below the Fremantle historic Roundhouse tourist attraction (2nd photo), with weeds of a metre-high popping up, but now an idiot has thrown down a rubbish bin that belongs to 10 Captain’s Lane, and it looks even worse for all those who walk and cycle by.

Roel Loopers

GIVE FREMANTLE THE MONEY, PREMIER MCGOWAN!

 

Fremantle Council lives in hope that the State Government will cough up for an expensive $ 2.5 million seawall and dredging at Port Beach, where the ultimate outcome , according to an engineers report, is that the beach will be lost in the distant future.

Freo Council has also been living in hope for two years that the McGowan government will give them the $ 1.8 million to stabilise historic Arthur’s Head, but that money has not be forthcoming, so now it is a project on the City’s advocacy list. Yep, Father Christmas will no doubt put the money that is needed under the tree, or Council might win Lotto.

The seawall would also need an additional $ 200,000 per year for operational costs, so where the hell will the money be coming from?!

It is an outrage that the WA State Government allows the popular tourist attraction of Arthur’s Head to remain an ugly fenced-off eyesore that is unstable and dangerous, when it constantly talks about tourism being very important for our state.

When was the last time Premier Mark McGowan and Heritage Minister David Templeman visited Fremantle and had a long talk with our elected members and senior officers about how the State can support our City that has a limited ratepayers base?

Why does Fremantle not get serious financial support from Fremantle Ports, that makes tens of millions of profit each year, for the Port Beach seawall, when there are claims that the Rouse Head extension is partly to blame for the disappearing beach?

Why does a small local government like Fremantle not get compensated by the State for the loss of income it has because Notre Dame University, that has a substantial property portfolio in the port city, is exempt from paying Council rates?

It is unacceptable that WA’s second city is being ignored and is getting very little help from the State Government. Fremantle is not a third-rate backwater dump that can be ignored, but one of the State’s major tourist destinations. We need, deserve and demand support from the McGowan government!

Roel Loopers

 

DUCKS AT BATHERS BEACH

 

ducks

 

Fremantle J Shed sculptor Greg James has created these lovely ducks and they are out and about on the grass at J Shed, so take the kids for a look, and also have a look inside at all the art displayed in the gallery.

Roel Loopers

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CONSERVATION PLAN FOR ROUNDHOUSE

Posted in arthur head, city of fremantle, heritage, local government, roundhouse, Uncategorized by freoview on November 23, 2019

The City of Fremantle is seeking your stories, connection and curiosity about the Round House, to help guide the future conservation and care of this important building.

The City is preparing a conservation management plan for the Round House building. A conservation management plan helps us to understand the place and its heritage values and provides policies to enable its significance to be retained in its future use and development.

We’re seeking your stories, connection and curiosity about the Round House to guide the direction of this work. Your input is an important part of ensuring the heritage values of the Round House are appropriately recognised, assessed and conserved.

The Round House building is located on Manjaree (Arthur Head) and the City will also consult specifically with Traditional Owners as part of our Aboriginal Engagement Plan.

How can I contribute?

Everyone with a connection to, or interest in, the Round House is welcome to contribute. The Round House has had many uses over the years including a gaol for the settlement, a holding point for Aboriginal prisoners being sent to Rottnest, a lock-up, house and for storage. Many workers have also been involved in repairs or works over the years. Today it operates as a significant tourist destination manned by the Fremantle Volunteer Heritage Guides, who are preparing an interpretation project.

Your stories and historical photographs (particularly incidental images) will supplement the City’s History collection or may help identify particular aspects of the building fabric which would assist with management and interpretation. Information on your curiosity will help build a picture of what our community and visitors would like to know more about.

You can:

  • Share your stories or upload information online (below), or
  • Complete a photographic donation form (click here or find in the document library) and drop in to the Fremantle Library 70 Parry Street Fremantle (Fremantle Oval) with your material.

Submit your stories on line at My Say Fremantle, or at Fremantle Library by Sunday 22 December 2019.

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FREO’S RENT A FENCE DOES NOT WIN TOURISM AWARD

 

 

It will not come as a surprise to the Fremantle community and overseas and interstate visitors that Freo’s Rent A Fence attraction at Arthur’s Head did not win a Tourism Award nor a Heritage Award.

Two years ago Fremantle Council decided to fence off large parts of historic Arthur’s Head because of danger of rockfall from the limestone cliff. It took a very long time before an engineer’s report was commissioned and that told us that there is interior erosion because of rain water and that repairs to the cliff on which Western Australia’s oldest public building the Roundhouse stands will cost approximately $ 1,8 million.

While the report recommended solutions it failed to test if vibrations from the heavy container trains that run within a few metres of the cliff face have any impact on the deterioration of the heritage precinct.

As I understand it the City invited the Minister for Mandurah, …err Heritage, David Templeman to do a site inspection but he could not be bothered, and so the ugly fences remain and absolutely nothing is done to repair the damage and make one of our state’s most significant historic areas an attraction again.

At present new solar lights are being installed along the coastal path but looking at fences is not a tourist attraction and does nothing to activate the West End of our gorgeous city.

It is a total disgrace that the Western Australian McGowan government does not care one bit about it!

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE MAYOR RESPONDS TO ART PRECINCT CRITICISM

 

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt responded to the criticism directed at him in the Fremantle Herald by Arthur’s Head artists and I believe it is fair to publish this more prominently than just a comment under yesterday’s article about it here on Freo’s View, so here is what Brad Pettitt had to say:

My blog post was intended to be a conversation starter so I’m pleased to see that it is starting a conversation on how Fremantle can best nurture its creative sector.

In relation to the article in the Herald, the Herald didn’t actually interview me for that story – they just quoted from my blog.

I thought it was very good that the Herald put this key issue out there more widely, but the words that the arts precinct at Arthur Head had ‘failed’ and the creative sector had ‘languished too long’ were the Herald’s words, not mine.

What I did say on my blog was that the Arthur Head Arts Precinct has never quite worked as a precinct, despite some individual high achievers.

However, I think the observation that the precinct as a whole hasn’t realised its full potential is fair.

The intent of my statement regarding the creative sector was to support and develop creative industries in Fremantle, not to criticise or denigrate the excellent work that has already been achieved.

I greatly value the contributions of those mentioned as part of the successful arts and cultural fabric of Fremantle, and have said to them that I would very much appreciate their involvement in future discussions about how we can nurture and grow Fremantle’s creative industries.

Best regards, Brad

 

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE ART PRECINCT NEEDS SOME PICKLE

 

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The report today in the property pages of the West Australian about the new Pickle District art development in the west end of the City of Vincent made me think-again-about how inadequate the City of Fremantle’s concept for the Bathers Beach Art Precinct has been.

While Vincent is encouraging the organic growth of art and culture in the historic warehouses and factories in the Newcastle, Loftus and Charles Street precinct, Fremantle has been disrespectful to the long-established artists at J Shed and have tried to move them on by permitting a tavern and live music venue on the A Class reserve at historic Arthur’s Head. That was only stopped by the WAPC.

The City of Vincent shows that one needs creativity and confidence in artists to just let things happen and grow, with small infrastructure support from the council.

Fremantle Council unfortunately often wants to micro manage development and that has shown to be counter productive at Arthur’s Head because Council lacks good ideas for the area and the unwillingness to invest there.

And while the dedicated artists just want to keep creating Freo City can’t even provide the No 1 studio at J Shed with power, so stone sculptor Jina Lee can’t use power tools and start working on new sculptures. I did not hear that from her by the way as she dedicates all her energy to her art.

It is time for the City to sit down with some really creative people in Fremantle and come up with a good concept for an arts precinct, and ideally that should include lovely Slip Street in Fremantle Port.

Roel Loopers

I AM SHAKING MY ARTHUR’S HEAD

 

When the City of Fremantle many years ago evicted the long-term residents and Port Pilots at Captain’s Lane on Arthur’s Head to create the Bathers Beach Art Precinct I warned they would be creating a ghost town at night that would attracts vagrants, homeless people and anti social behaviour, and I was right.

Fremantle Council is now finally acknowledging that the BBAP does not work in its current conception, so one has to wonder what will be coming next.

The J Shed artists have been stressed for far too long about their future at Arthur’s Head, with having to fight the ridiculous decision by Fremantle Council  to lease the shed for a tavern and outdoor music venue to Sunset Events. That madness was only stopped by the WA Planning Commission after years of protests from residents .

Now the J Shed artists have not got their four-year leases renewed because Council is dreaming about an Aboriginal culture centre there, so what is the future for Greg James, Jenny Dawkins, Janet Nixon, Lesley Barrett, Jina Lee, Peter Zuvela and others?

Fremantle Council has been talking for years about activating Arthur’s Head and the West End of town, but have spent very little money on the area. The tavern nonsense would have given them sewerage and public toilets, paid for by others, and they have neglected one of our state’s and the city’s most significant historic precinct for yonkers.

The City should have built public toilets, a small cafe at J Shed, and extend the boardwalk from the Bathers Beach House to J Shed, but instead they have been living in LaLa land in the hope that commercial investment will do what the city does not want to finance.

Arthur’s Head is falling to bits with rock fall forcing the fencing off of large areas. It looks terrible!

For twenty years Fremantle Council has shown no interest whatsoever in the management and running of the Roundhouse. The oldest public building in Western Australia receives no annual funding from the city, it does not get financial and in kind support for marketing, or uniforms or anything, and it is a struggle for the volunteers to get the smallest repairs done.

The Roundhouse receives around 150.000 visitors a year so it is a significant tourist attraction, but the City says when the volunteers started they wanted to be autonomous, so what?! That does not mean Council should not show a very close interest in how it is working out and if the volunteers might just need a bit of help and TLC now and then. The mainly senior guides definitely deserve it, as they keep the old goal open seven days a week throughout the year. That’s a massive effort!

When the Crookes family, the Fremantle Society and the Port Pilots were still up on Arthur’s Head there was 24/7 activation. The kids brought friends home from Lance Holt school. They played on the grass, had lemonade stands to sell drinks to tourists, the Society held Bocce nights, heritage festival and Australia Day events, etc. And there was a lot of interaction from the verandas with passing visitors, but all that was not good enough for our elected members.

The place has now become an eyesore after many artists failed to succeed in the residential former pilots’ cottages, and even the Walyalup Aboriginal Cultural Centre does not have a big impact there.

Fremantle Council wants more activation, but closes the Whalers Tunnel at 7pm, which is well before sun set in summer. It could have made the pilots’ cottages into B&B to guarantee activation of Captain’s and Mrs Trivett Lane, but instead they added them to the artist studios program of the Fremantle Arts Centre, which means that many don’t even have to, or are allowed to, open to the public.

Arthur’s Head is shambles, it brings shame on Fremantle, and it is a sign of very bad governance of the area. And of course the State Government conveniently states that the cliff was vested in the City of Fremantle so it is not their problem to stabilise the cliff face, do urgent repairs and beautifications, and show a serious interest in the historic Roundhouse. All that while Fremantle Prison and the Shipwrecks and Maritime museums are getting all the financial support they need from the state government.

It is not good enough Fremantle Council and Premier Mark McGowan!

Roel Loopers

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