Scaffolding has finally gone up at the historic Warders Cottages next to Fremantle Markets. It will probably take many years but at least something is happening and someone is looking after the derelict buildings that have been an eyesore for years.
The Married Warders cottages at Cantonment Hill are now also been renovated so finally Freo’s heritage is getting some well-overdue attention.
I don’t swear often but last night at the artists-organised Captain’s Lane Summer Fest I said What the f… is wrong with the City of Fremantle?!
Here we had real activation of the Bathers Beach Art Precinct with open studios, an art market and live music, while down at beach level the Bathers Beach House and markets were packed full and Kidogo Arthouse had the underwater film festival, but at 7 pm the Whalers Tunnel, the natural connection between the events had been closed! This just two days after the City launched its Transformational Moves document that highlights the desire to activate and improve that area of the West End of Fremantle!
But that is not all! While every one of the Pilot’s Cottages was open and participated in the Arthur Head art fest, the City- managed and funded Walyalup Aboriginal Culture Centre was closed and dark, when this would have been the opportune occasion for them to highlight they are there, especially since there were many Nyoongar people at the fest.
The Centre is a dud, a clear sign of COF colonial tokenism to just give those black people their own centre in a totally inappropriate small cottage. It gets yearly funding that is less than the funding for the six-hour Wardarnji Aboriginal Festival during the Fremantle Festival! The Centre is so under financed that it is only open on weekday mornings till 1 pm and is not open at all on weekends and public holidays. What a whole load of crap! And don’t get me wrong. I lay absolutely no blame on Centre manager Brendan Moore who is a great guy and who tries his best with limited funding and support.
The early closure of the Whalers Tunnel is ridiculous in an area that is developing very well with many more people using the beach. The City of Fremantle spent tens of thousands of dollars on lighting up the cliff face of Arthur Head, but when one walks down High Street to get there one finds the tunnel closed after 7 pm. It stayed open previous years till 10 pm so why did the City change that?
The good concept of an arts precinct has been managed very badly by COF, with Captain’s Lane being a ghost town after dark and studios only required to be open from Thursday-Sunday 11am to 4 pm. Now homeless people sleep on the verandas and in the back yards and leave nice parcels of their defacations behind for the occupants to clean up.
What the City of Fremantle needs is someone who oversees what the different departments are doing. Most of us would ignorantly assume this is the job of the CEO, but it appears Graeme McKenzie has better things to do than making sure departments coordinate their actions and that those who close the Whalers Tunnel know that the tourist destination should stay open to attract visitors to the costly lit-up Arthur Head.
Fremantle does not need glossy Transformational Moves documents and media spin, but common sense, coordination and for some highly-paid officers to get off their arse and actually check out what goes on in the streets of this city!
The Captain’s Lane artists deserved much better support than just the BID funding they got last night. They are doing it again in a fortnight, so let’s hope that is enough time for the City of Fremantle to organise the permanent opening of the tunnel till 10 pm and participation by the Walyalup Aboriginal centre.
Well done to the Captain’s Lane artists at the Bathers Beach Art Precinct on Fremantle’s historic Arthur Head for creating such a great atmosphere at the first CAPTAIN’S LANE SUMMER FEST on Saturday evening.
The lane had been transformed into an art market and the studios and galleries were open, while the Junkadelic, The BIZ, Miss Mary and Co and Latin dancers entertained the appreciative crowd.
There is another Captain’s Lane Summer Fest in a fortnight, so book it in!
Work is progressing well on the new office building of the Mediterranean Shipping Company-MSC in Cliff Street, Fremantle.
North Fremantle architects Murray Slavin designed the new building that will be connected to the old building on the corner and become accommodation for hundreds of MSC staff. It is due for completion later this year around September.
Wild Twig Studios and Bathers Beach Art Precinct are organising the Fremantle Captain’s Lane Summer Fest this Saturday February 28 from 5-9 pm.
Live bands, live artists, open studios and galleries, art stalls and a great heritage vibe.
Music by BiZ Project, Junkadelic, Latin Dance Co and Ms Mary & Co. Bring along your picnic and rugs and enjoy a summer night of fun and delight.
Event address: 10 Captains Lane, next to the Round House at Arthur Head.
The Wyola Club in Fremantle’s historic High Street in the west end of town has finally given its street frontage a facelift and two shop spaces have been developed. One of them is going to be the ARTISAN STORE and the operator is looking for artisans and artists who want to display their works there, so contact Rowena on 0435 398148.
Already in the gallery stable are Amanda Harris, Andrea Isaac, Annemieke Mulders, Belinda Kay, Brenda Warner, Bronwyn Elliott, Felicity Peters, Hannah Katarski, Ilkay Dere, Jo Barrie, Kate Brown, Keith Terry, Koi Girl, Kylie Marie Watt, Lin Reading, Lisa Branco, Myra Staffa, Paul Welch, Rachel Doller, Rachel Verheggen, Rheana Bijl, Sarah Wherry, Scruff and Cockrobin, Shana James, Silvana Ferrario, Steven Makse, Ted Ellyard, Brad Mettam, Lynne Mettam, Rachel Prideaux, Tamara Dixon, and Fluid Ink.
Check out the website for more information: http://www.theartisanstore.com.au
SCULPTURE@BATHERS will be on in Fremantle again this year from March 14 and what a showcase of artistic 3 D creative genius it will be, with a great line up of Western Australian artists.
S@B is to Sculptures by the Beach what the Fremantle Cracker Night is to the Perth Australia Day fireworks. The Freo show is based on exciting established and emerging new local talent only and is a portfolio of some of the best Western Australia’s sculptors and installation artists. It is held at Bathers Beach around Kidogo Arthouse and will spread over historic Arthur Head.
Artists include: Kathy Allam, Jenny Anderson, Odd Anderson, Claire Bailey, Sebastian Befumo, Merrick Belyea, Vaughn Bisschops, Tim Burns, Ryan Cant, Mikaela Castledine, Joshua Cobb-Diamond, Jennifer Cochrane, Nic Compton, Peter Dailey, Thomas de Munk-Kerkmeer, Jon Denaro, Geoffrey Drake-Brockman, Kevin Draper, Lisa Dymond, Sharyn Egan, Stuart Elliott & Sue Starcken, Marcia Espinosa, Sue Flavell, Richard Fry, Marion Giles, Miik Green, John Grono, Mandy Harwood, Thomas Heidt, Daniel Iley, Rhett Jones, Tony Jones, Paul Kaptein, Peter Knight, Theo Koning, Pam Langdon, Jina Lee, Melanie Maclou, Akio Makigawa, Carlier Makigawa, Jason Maxlow, Janine McAullay-Bott, Angela McHarrie, Sandy McKendrick, Belinda Mettam, Nicole Mickle, Gordon Mitchell, Antony Muia, Anne Neil, Michael O’Doherty, Geoff Overheu, Tony Pankiw & Sue Coode, Johannes Pannekoek, Sigrid Ranze, Maris Raudzins, Trevor Richards, Jean-Marc Rivalland, Alessandra Rossi, Britt Salt, Helen Seiver, Russell Sheridan, Holly Story, Oliver Stretton-Pow, John Tarry, Tracks Taylor, Steve Tepper, Carmel Warner, Liezl Watermeyer-Collins, Sarah Wilkinson, Natalie Williamson, Rima Zabeneh.
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It’s finally happening! Contractors have started work on the renovations of the Fremantle Married Quarters cottages at Cantonment Hill. Four new residencies will also be built on the site that had been neglected for far too many years by the Department of Defence.
The cottages will be reinstated as living quarters for Defence personnel so that will help reactivate the area and minimise vandalism there. The gateway to Freo has been an eyesore for as long as I can remember, so it is not before time that something is finally done to look after the important heritage buildings.
Now hoping State Government will follow suit with the Warders Cottages and the National Trust with the Royal George Hotel.
It is very good news that the Fly by Night musicians club will stay in Fremantle. The City of Fremantle’s Strategic and General Services Committee this evening approved a one year, plus one year, lease of Victoria Hall to the community arts group.
The Fly has been an institution of Freo for nearly 30 years and have strongly supported community groups and schools and they have been an incubator for new musical talent.
As I said at Council, the City of Arts could ill afford to lose another arts organisation after the demise of Kulcha and Deckchair, the FTI leaving town, and the probable loss of the Circus School.
A relatively short lease will show if the Fly by Night can make it work at Victoria Hall but also leaves the option open to move to a better venue should one come available. As Councillor Rachel Pemberton said, it’s a win win for all!
A big thank you for the hard work and great collaboration should go to COF Director Tom Griffiths and his staff and the Fly by Night management who obviously needed to compromise as well.
The City of Fremantle has some serious health&safety and public liability worries at the Roundhouse that need to be urgently addressed before someone gets badly hurt. We know of three people who have fallen because parts of the path have broken off and made the surface dangerous, but there might well be more who did not report it. It’s only a matter of time till someone will break an ankle or arm.
Repairs should be a priority at the well-visited tourist destination that attracts hundreds of people every day. The Fremantle Volunteer Heritage Guides who look after the Roundhouse have reported the damage and danger to the COF several times.