Freo's View

ROUNDHOUSE CLOSED AGAIN ON SUNDAY

 

Roundhouse

 

It is an outrage that one of Fremantle’s most significant tourist destinations, the historic Roundhouse, is closed again today on Sunday, which is one of the busiest days of the week.

The weather is perfectly alright with some very dark clouds around but it is pleasantly warm and there are a lot of people wandering the streets.

The oldest public building in Western Australia was also closed last week on Friday, Saturday and Monday and that is not acceptable at all.

The Fremantle Volunteer Heritage Guides who manage the Roundhouse sent a statement to the Fremantle Herald that before every winter an assessment is made, but that is nonsense of Trumpian proportions.

Fact is that traditionally the Roundhouse was only closed on Good Friday and Christmas Day and open to the public every other day of the year. If the weather is too inclement the team on the day might decide to close an hour or so early, but never have volunteer guides turned up and decided not to open this historic jail at all.

It is not good enough and it is reassuring to know that the City of Fremantle  is finally showing some interest to manage the tourist destination more professionally.

The unscheduled closures could well jeopardise the grant application with Lotterywest for new interpretive displays in the Roundhouse, which is a superb project just waiting for funding.

When is the State Government going to show interest in historically significant Arthur’s Head and the Roundhouse?

Roel Loopers

 

FREMANTLE ROUNDHOUSE CLOSURE DISGRACE!

 

closure

 

The closure of the Fremantle Roundhouse today is the third day out of four the very popular tourist attraction has been closed to the public. It was closed on Friday and Saturday, supposedly due to bad weather, although the weather was in no way extreme and intolerable, and today the sign states that WA’s oldest public building is closed  due to a shortage of volunteers.

Fact is that the current president and some committee members of the volunteer group have been procrastinating instead of tackling the major issues of funding and volunteers.

I was a volunteer at the Roundhouse for nine years and loved talking with tourists from all over the world, but I resigned two weeks ago after a rude email from the president in reply to my email suggestions for improvements and changes. I was told that my emails to committee were a waste of energy and he reminded me I was not on committee, indicating I should just shut up.

It is now time for the City of Fremantle to immediately take over the management of the Roundhouse as this significant building has to be open to the public.  I am happy to get involved again under new more progressive and committed management.

A school group that arrived at 1.30pm today stood in front of the closed doors and that is very disappointing.

Roel Loopers

ROUNDHOUSE CLOSURE A REAL WORRY FOR FREMANTLE

 

 

It is a real worry that the Fremantle Roundhouse is closed today, and I was told it was closed most of yesterday as well.

A sign on the door says it is closed due to bad weather, but a few showers have never forced the Roundhouse volunteers to close all day in the nine years I worked there.

Fremantle Council now needs to take urgent action because it is not acceptable that the oldest public building in WA and one of Fremantle’s most significant tourist attractions is now randomly closed, presumably because of lack of volunteers.

In the nine years I was on duty only on the worst winter days did we close an hour early at 2.30pm, but all day closure only ever happened on Christmas Day and Good Friday.

I hear that at committee level of the volunteers it has been suggested they might have to wind up and hand the management of the building back to the City, but what then when there is no contingency plan in place?  Even if they staff the Roundhouse with volunteers from the Visitor Centre they would still need some of the current volunteers who have the license to fire the 1pm cannon.

Both Fremantle Council and the Roundhouse committee are to blame for not having been pro-active enough in trying to get new volunteers and annual funding. With enough State, City and Federal funding Roundhouse guides could get paid and the tourist attraction would be on the same level as Fremantle Prison, the Maritime Museum and the Shipwreck Museum, which all receive government funding.

The Roundhouse is very significant to Fremantle’s  and Western Australia’s history and the City can’t just sit back and let it close due to procrastination and lack of vision.

Roel Loopers

 

FREO’S WEST END LAKES DISTRICT

 

ah 1

ah 2

 

The wet weather is leaving its marks in Fremantle. It is impossible to get through the Whalers Tunnel because of a deep puddle on the west end of it, while the foot and bicycle paths on either side of Arthur’s Head also have huge puddles.

There is a sink hole starting to develop on the corner of High and Little High Street next to Chalkys cafe and there is a lake in front of J Shed.

It’s not a good look for visitors to our city.

In that context, what is the progress with the stabilisation works required at Arthur’s Head, City of Fremantle?

Roel Loopers

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EAST FREO Z CARD FOR HERITAGE TRAIL

 

Heritage card

From the Town of East Fremantle: We recently launched a new Heritage Trail map with watercolour depictions of the local architecture around town.

You can pick up a Z-CARD from Town Hall or text the word ‘Heritage’ to 0475 111 222 for a digital copy.

Thanks to the team at Z-Card PocketMedia Solutions for working with us on this project!

This should inspire the City of Fremantle to do something similar. The Freopedia QR codes on building which were started by the Fremantle Society were unfortunately not continued and the East Freo smartphone Z-Card is an even better idea, so what about it This Is Fremantle?

Roel Loopers

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THIS IS FREMANTLE MARKETING CAMPAIGN UNDER WAY

Posted in city of fremantle, local government, marketing, PR,, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on June 5, 2019

 

The first major campaign under the new This is Fremantle brand is being rolled out over the coming month. I already noticed a public transport bus with the promo on its side the other day driving through Fremantle.

The campaign, which utilises digital, radio and outdoor platforms, is designed to raise awareness of Fremantle as a destination and guide visitors to the new visitfremantle.com website and social media channels.

The This is Fremantle campaign is targeting the local Perth market. A survey by Tourism WA in 2017 showed Fremantle was Perth’s most popular entertainment precinct across people of all ages.

Acting Mayor Rachel Pemberton said that “This campaign is about reminding those people of the great things Freo has to offer and getting Perth people to fall in love with Fremantle again.”

“In addition to this new campaign we’re also working with government agencies like Destination Perth, Perth Convention Bureau and Tourism WA, and with travel wholesalers to promote Fremantle nationally and internationally.”

The City urges local businesses to get behind the campaign and engage with the brand by sticking the ‘This is Fremantle’ shop window sticker on their front window.

The outdoor component of the new campaign features billboards at six strategic locations around Perth, including the digital billboards on the Kwinana and Mitchell freeways and static billboards at Perth Airport, Mosman Park, Osborne Park and Mt Lawley.

There will also be showcase advertising on Transperth buses, and ‘This is Fremantle’ videos screened on the big screens at Optus Stadium during Fremantle Dockers home games.

The campaign also includes digital advertising, a social media campaign and a radio campaign with Nathan, Nat and Shaun on NOVA 93.7 Perth.

This is the first major brand driven campaign to be delivered by the City of Fremantle as part of the Destination Marketing Strategic Plan 2018-2022.

It will be followed by a winter events campaign with a focus on Fremantle events like the Fremantle Festival: 10 Nights in Port, plus a winter tactical campaign for hospitality businesses promoting restaurants, pubs, small bars and winter dining experiences in Fremantle.

In addition, the July edition of the Qantas in-flight magazine, which is read by over 400,000 people, will incorporate a full page editorial feature promoting Fremantle’s arts and culture based events and festivals.

For more information on the ‘This is Fremantle’ campaign and how to get involved visit the Destination Marketing page on the City’s website.

 

Roel Loopers

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THE FREO ROUNDHOUSE EVEN ROUNDER

Posted in arthur head, city of fremantle, heritage, historic, roundhouse, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on June 3, 2019

 

Roundhouse

 

I borrowed the round hand mirror from the Glen Cowans Photography Gallery yesterday to take this unusual photo of the Fremantle Roundhouse and High Street.

I always like the looking backward and forward of reflections, so here is another one for you.

It was very busy up on Arthur’s Head yesterday with a very large number of Asians visiting Fremantle, so we are very popular with our neighbour countries.

Roel Loopers

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CASHLESS DONATIONS AT FREO ROUNDHOUSE

Posted in arthur head, city of fremantle, heritage, historic, roundhouse, tourism, Uncategorized by freoview on June 2, 2019

 

Roundhouse cashless donations

 

Western Australia’s oldest remaining public building, the Fremantle Roundhouse, has embraced the cashless society by installing a card reader that will take $ 2.00 out of one’s account when one taps a credit or debit card when visiting the old jail.

Visitors often claim that they have no coins on them, or that they did put them all in parking meters, and disappointingly often visitors simply do not want to make a donation.

Of course coins and bank notes will still be gratefully accepted as well.

What most visitors do not know is that the donations are essential to keep the Roundhouse open to the public because the volunteer organisation does not get any financial support from the State and Local Governments, so they rely on the donations to buy uniforms, print brochures, etc.

It is now URGENT for Fremantle Council and the State Government to start financially supporting the Roundhouse if it wants the very popular historic tourism destination to remain an attraction in our city and state!

If there are any corporate organisations which would like to support the volunteers financially please give them a call.

Roel Loopers

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PIPES FOR FREMANTLE UPDATE

Posted in city of fremantle, community, hospitality, parking, retail, tourism, traders, Uncategorized, water by freoview on May 31, 2019

 

I received the latest update for the PIPES for FREMANTLE from the Water Corporation so I’ll publish it in full here so that the Freo community is aware of all the details:

Please read the below update about upcoming work to renew the ageing water mains across Fremantle.

Meeting with City of Fremantle

On Monday 27 May 2019 members of the Water Corporation project team met with City of Fremantle CEO Philip St John and Mayor Brad Pettit to discuss the work including concerns raised by the business community.

Together, we all agreed the work must be done as quickly and safely as possible, with the least amount of impact as practically possible to the whole community.

We are currently working closely with the City to identify flexible working hour options for each individual street for renewal. Each street is home to residents and businesses, or a combination of both. This means a 24 hour, seven days a week approach may not always be the best option for a residential street, as we do prefer to offer customers some reprieve from the work.

Other flexible working hour options can include working on the weekends, longer shifts and the potential for both day and night work shifts where appropriate.

Customer survey

You will soon receive an invitation to participate in a survey about your preferred working days and hours for the construction work to be carried out. This information and your feedback will be used in determining suitable working days and hours for the project.

The survey will be sent within the next week.

Awarding a contract of work

We’re still yet to award a contract. This is taking longer than expected, however we will share this information with all customers once it becomes available.

Project timeline

To ensure we’re vacating the area before the summer months, we’ve decided to split the renewal of streets into two packages of work.

Streets for renewal mid-July to November 2019

Bannister Street, between Pakenham Street to Market Street
Collie Street, between Marine Terrace and South Terrace
Essex Lane, between Collie Street and Essex Street
Essex Street, between Marine Terrace and South Terrace
High Street, between Little High Street and Market Street
Marine Terrace, between Cliff Street and Suffolk Street, and Howard Street and Price Street
Norfolk Street, between Marine Terrace and South Terrace
Streets for renewal March to mid-2020 (months be confirmed)

Pakenham Street, between Collie Street and Leake Street
Leake Street and Cantonment Street, between Pakenham Street and Queen Street
Nairn Street, between Pakenham Street and Market Street
Market Street, between High Street and Bannister Street
South Terrace, between Bannister Street and Norfolk Street
Please note, the above timings are subject to change pending a contract being awarded. Work will be carried out in a staged approach. We will share a proposed construction schedule and traffic management with customers once this information becomes available.

Pipes for Perth pop up shop – 66 High Street, Fremantle

A Pipes for Fremantle pop up information centre will be located at 66 High Street, Fremantle, for the duration of the construction work. Members of the project team will be on hand at the shop to discuss the project in detail, answer questions and listen to any concerns the local community or businesses may have.

Business information sessions will take place at the pop up shop between 18 and 20 June 2019.

Further information about the information sessions, opening hours and an official pop up shop open date will be provided shortly.

The next project update will be sent Friday 7 June 2019.

Who to contact

For more information, please visit watercorporation.com.au/pipesforfremantle. Alternatively, telephone our dedicated Pipes for Perth Customer Solutions team on (08) 9420 3529, available weekdays during business hours or email pipesforperth@watercorporation.com.au.

Kind Regards
Community Engagement
Water Corporation

 

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FREMANTLE MARKETS MANAGEMENT CRITICISED

 

 

Two articles in the West Australian raise concerns about the rents and management of the Fremantle Markets, and that is a real shame because it is one of Freo’s most popular weekend destinations that attracts many thousands of visitors each day of trading.

The West questions if the City of Fremantle is getting maximum value out of its property when the Market operators pocketed some $ 11 million over the last five years and under the contract agreement only paid back $ 3.8 million to the City.

I understand building maintenance is City of Fremantle’s responsibility.

It is alleged in the articles in the West Australian that rents for stallholders in the markets is seven times more than along the Cappuccino Strip, although the markets only trade three weekend days a week and on public holidays. It is claimed that in this time of rent increases in the markets rents along the Cappuccino Strip halved because of the economic downturn.

Some market stall holders, according to the West Australian and Fremantle Herald, claim there is Russian dictatorship management at Femantle Markets after a doughnut trader was evicted for trying to re-start the tenants association, which is denied by markets CEO Natasha Atkinson.

The decision by a previous Fremantle Council to grant an extension of the markets lease to the Murdoch family was highly controversial at the time and created a lot of anger in the community.

The Fremantle Markets are very popular with tourists, visitors from all over Perth, and locals and have in my opinion improved a lot, especially in the food hall. It is the go to attraction in Freo on the weekends, so it is a real shame it is getting so much negative publicity. It is time for Fremantle Council to mediate and support the traders.

Roel Loopers

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