Freo's View

AUSTRALIA DAY THREAT TO LOCAL COUNCILS

Posted in aboriginal, australia day, city of fremantle, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 15, 2017

 

Australia Day smoking ceremony in the Fremantle Roundhouse

 

According to a report in the West Australian today the Federal Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection has written to all 547 local councils in Australia, and warned them that they will be stripped off their right to hold citizenship ceremonies, if there are politically motivated attacks on Australia Day.

Fremantle Council this year stopped the Australia Day firework on January 26 and instead had a One Day event on the Esplanade on the 28th.

The fireworks still went ahead and were paid for by the Fishing Boat Harbour traders.

I am not sure that I consider the now national discussion about a more appropriate date to celebrate Australia Day as political motivated. It is only genuine consideration for Australia’s indigenous people, who consider January 26 as invasion day.

 

Roel Loopers

CELEBRATING FREO’S HERITAGE BATTLERS

 

High Street 1

 

I am delighted to have received notification from Fremantle Notre Dame University that the Vice Chancellor and senior staff have taken on board the suggestion I posted on Freo’s View last week of a commemorative wall at the back of the St Teresa Library in Henry Street.

The wall would commemorate the history of Fremantle and the contribution made by individuals and groups to preserve our heritage buildings.

UNDA wrote to me that they are now considering a wall with historic B&W photos plus a plaque that would feature individuals and groups, such as the Fremantle Society, who have been involved in preserving the precinct’s historic character.

This would be a nice new tourist attraction and acknowledgment of the dedicated work of Freo’s heritage warriors such as Les Lauder, Don Whittington, June Hutchison, John Dowson, Ron Davis, etc.

I hope that with collaboration with the City of Fremantle the wall will become reality in the not too distant future. Thank you UNDA!

If you want to learn about the many battles to save Freo’s heritage try to get a copy of the Fighting For Fremantle book the Fremantle Society published!

 

Roel Loopers

FREMANTLE HERITAGE WALL OF FAME

Posted in city of fremantle, heritage, notre dame university, Uncategorized by freoview on July 30, 2017

 

wall of fame

 

I wonder if the City of Fremantle and Notre Dame University would be interested in collaborating on a Heritage Wall of Fame.

While buildings, builders and architects do get recognition at heritage awards, the custodians of our built heritage rarely get a mention.

I understand that some of our heritage protectors are a bit on the nose with council and developers, but their passionate  and tireless efforts over many years to retain the heritage integrity of Fremantle deserves recognition.

This blank and boring wall in Henry Street would be perfectly suited to put small plaques on that acknowledge such people as Les Lauder, Don Whittington, June Hutchison, John Dowson, etc.

We could start with half a dozen and add a new person every year during Heritage Week.

What about it UNDA Vice Chancellor Celia Hammond and Mayor Brad Pettitt?

 

Roel Loopers

 

LET’S GET SERIOUS ABOUT ABORIGINAL TOURISM

Posted in aboriginal, city of fremantle, indigenous, Uncategorized, western australia by freoview on July 26, 2017

 

When it comes to Aboriginal issues tokenism is always high, and walking the talk less of a reality.

Yesterday WA Minister for Tourism Paul Papalia stated that Aboriginal culture is WA’s secret weapon, but it appears the minister was only talking about giving tourists an outback experience, with no plans to offer an Aboriginal experience in Perth, Fremantle and other major cities around the state.

It is quite disturbing that neither of the two major cities has a serious Aboriginal cultural centre where overseas visitors can find out about Aboriginal history, culture, art, music, story telling, and food.

The City of Fremantle made a half-hearted attempt by running a small historic cottage at Arthur Head as the Walyalup Aboriginal Cultural Centre, but it was doomed to failure from the start, because of the inappropriate small building and location.

When one goes up to Derby the Mowanjum Aboriginal Centre is a great place to visit, as is the Aboriginal art centre at Warmun (Turkey Creek) and Mangkaja in Fitzroy Crossing, but there is nothing like that in the Perth metro area, but for commercial art galleries run by white fellas.

It is time the State Government started walking the talk and helped funding some serious Aboriginal cultural centres in our cities!

 

Roel Loopers

A FREMANTLE TALE OF TWO TRIANGLES AND A SQUARE

Posted in architecture, city of fremantle, development, kings square, Uncategorized by freoview on July 22, 2017

 

There is a bit of ambiguity in this little snippet of the invitation to a Kings Square information session by the FRRAemantle Society.

“The Fremantle Society has from day one expressed concern at the King’s Square Business Plan. That and the flawed King’s Square Urban Design Study by CODA architects have set the parameters for large buildings insensitive to the scale of the historic human scale of Fremantle, the nearby World Heritage listed Fremantle Prison, turning King’s Square into King’s Triangle.” 

It was not the CODA Kings Square Urban Design Study that set the parameters for medium-rise buildings at Kings Square, but Planning Scheme Amendment 49, approved by the Minister in 2012.

PSA 49 identified 13 sites in the Fremantle CBD for high density infill. One site will become the Hilton Doubletree development, the Woolstores shopping centre site is another one, and Kings Square is also one of the PSA 49 sites.

Some of the historic woolstores in Fremantle are well above the “human scale” we constantly hear the Fremantle Society talking about, and the Townhall probably would not have been approved because of its height if FS had had anything to say about it.

The medium-rise Kings Square development will have no impact whatsoever on Fremantle Prison.

The lament about Kings Square being changed into two triangles is tedious, as in 1881 High Street was extended through the square, so two triangles were created then. One triangle belongs to St John’s church, the other triangle is City of Fremantle.

Only in 1960 was High Street closed and the square returned to a square, but the High Street road reserve still exists and St John’s church still own half of the square, realistically making it into two triangles.

Even now some traders in the West End want to reopen High Street through Kings Square to help their struggling businesses, but I hope that will never happen.

High density infill is a State Government requirement, and the near derelict condition of the city east of Kings Square will only benefit from substantial development, that will greatly help improve the retail and hospitality economy in our city.

Nothing is constant in life. The world changes, Fremantle progresses and modernises, and that is a good thing. We don’t live in a museum, but in a living, breathing space full of energy, innovation, change, creativity, and after 40 years of stagnation and hibernation, finally development!

What we need to be far more concerned about than the Kings Square Project and development in the East End is the relentless push by developers to get extra height in the historic West End of the city. That is not acceptable and needs to be stopped!

Roel Loopers

CELEBRATING THE ABORIGINAL FLAG

Posted in aboriginal, city of fremantle, indigenous, Uncategorized by freoview on July 12, 2017

 

Aboriginal Flag

 

It is 46 years ago today that the Aboriginal Flag was flown for the very first time in Adelaide.

The flag designed by Harald Thomas has now become a real national symbol and is flown daily at many buildings, including the Fremantle Roundhouse.

Many of our First Nation people are still struggling, so we need greater awareness and a lot less judgement and racism.

Roel Loopers

ART OUT OF AFRICA

Posted in art, fremantle, Uncategorized by freoview on June 22, 2017

 

PS ART SPACE in Fremantle’s Pakenham Street is in my opinion the best art space in Fremantle, and probably all of Perth. The huge cavernous heritage warehouse is such a gorgeous space to exhibit art in, as is shown again at the Antipodes Urban Axis exhibition.

Contemporary art from the African continent by 47 artists from countries such as Zimbabwe, Kenya, Namibia, Congo and South Africa make a beautiful installation in the stunning space.

The exhibition runs until July 22, so make sure to go and visit and while there try the great coffee and food at the Studio 37 cafe.

Roel Loopers

Comments Off on ART OUT OF AFRICA

LOCAL COUNCILS WANT AUSTRALIA DAY CHANGE

Posted in aboriginal, australia day, city of fremantle, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on June 21, 2017

The decision by the Australian Local Government Association, which represents 560 local councils, to lobby the Commonwealth to change the date of Australia Day away from January 26 is a clear indication that the City of Fremantle’s decision to no longer have firework and celebrations on Australia Day was not a lunatic decision by some lefty socialists, but good and sensitive leadership that is now debated all around the country.

January 26, the arrival of the First Fleet in Botany Bay, Sydney, is seen as an insensitive date to celebrate Australia by many of our indigenous people, who regard the day as Invasion Day.

ALGA will at their July meeting decide what action to take, so stay tuned.

Roel Loopers

ROUNDHOUSE SEEING THE LIGHT

Posted in aboriginal, city of fremantle, heritage, history, roundhouse, Uncategorized by freoview on June 18, 2017

Roundhouse

 

If the State Heritage Office has no objections the Fremantle Roundhouse will finally get electricity so that the volunteer guides can start applying for funding to Lottery West and elsewhere to install the new displays that have been designed by museum designers after community consultation.

This will finally also give us the change to properly recognise the Whadjuk Noongar people and correct incorrect information.

The displays have been looking tired and outdated for some years now and the Roundhouse needs to become even more attractive to international, interstate and local visitors and use modern technology.

Thanks to the hard work of the Roundhouse  committee, the lobbying of Freo’s View, and the personal commitment from Mayor Brad Pettitt the City has now found a way of funding the power into the oldest public building in WA from a maintenance budget.

We are keen to have more evening events in and around the Roundhouse to help activate Arthur Head after hours and already the High Tide Festival in October will be using the Roundhouse and the Irish Festival in January has also put feelers out to do some events in the Roundhouse.

All we need now is substantial financial support to implement the changes!

Roel Looper

IRISH FREMANTLE FESTIVAL

Posted in fremantle, history, Uncategorized by freoview on June 9, 2017

 

 

last-convict-ship-Hougoumont

 

The Irish festival planned for Fremantle to commemorate the arrival of the Hougoumont in Fremantle on January 9, 1868, the last convict ship to sail to Australia 150 years ago, is attracting interest from the Irish government.

The Ambassador of Ireland Breandan O Caollai visited Kidogo Arthouse with a group of officers from the Canberra embassy this week.

The Fenians, Fremantle & Freedom Festival will be held from January 5-14, 2018 at locations around Fremantle from Bathers Beach through the West End and Fremantle Prison.

On board the Hougoumont was also John Boyle O’Reilly who escaped some years later on the Gazelle and ended up as the editor of The Pilot newspaper in Boston, USA.

Between 1865 and 1867 the British had arrested members and supporters of the Irish Republican Brotherhood and 62 of them were transported to the penal colony of Western Australia.

John Boyle O’Reilly became later involved in getting funding for the Catalpa that sailed to Rockingham to pick up six Fenians who had escaped from Fremantle Prison. This fascinating bit of history is commemorated on the Rockingham foreshore with the impressive Six Wild Geese sculpture just south of the townsite.

An Irish festival will means music, dance, food, beer and lots of fun, so I am looking forward to it.

The Facebook page feniansfestival will keep you up to date over the next six months.

Roel Loopers

%d bloggers like this: