Notes from the President

Notes from the President

Renaming Kings Square:

After so much damage to King's Square (Moreton Bay Figs gone, the square filled in, white heritage trashed and replaced by $200,000 of Aboriginal art designed by a white man) the Fremantle Society is unhappy that the woke cancel culture will continue with the renaming of Kings Square.

We asked the Church, who own half of it, if we could set up a table and collect signatures about the issue, but they refused. We went to King's Square anyway, and the people we spoke to are angry about Fremantle Council's constant ideological crusades against our history.

Politics in the Pub tomorrow night at The Local Hotel at 7pm deals with this issue, and even though the Fremantle Society has never been invited to any Fremantle Network event, we suggest you go and make a stand for our history. But, given the government has extended the 4 square metre rule to apply till midnight Friday, it is hard to know how a crowd of 20 can be viable.

The two photographs above show the latest look of King's Square. We dont know anyone who actually likes the new look that will leave Fremantle $40 million in debt. We have written to Council to ask why the statue of Hughie Edwards has been removed when we were promised it would stay.

Finances of the Fremantle:

Head over to Streetwise to read the latest expose of shocking financial neglect by Fremantle Council, something the Fremantle Society has been trying to get you to do something about for years.

This needs to be read by a wide range of people. Of particular concern is the paragraph:" A former financial expert of 30 years told StreetWise the City’s $32 million debt will grow unless the State Government throws it a life line: “The City can look forward to less revenue, less staff and less services. It does not have enough funds to maintain the asset base and take care of properties in Fremantle. Ultimately, ratepayers will underwrite the City’s bad finances. Rates will increase by three, four, five per cent each year and there will be cost cutting. And it still has to repay borrowings on $20 million.”

After Fremantle rates went up in effect 10% last year, they will be going up again this year to pay for the financial mistakes of Mayor Pettitt and his councillors.

Arthur Head:

Remediation works are progressing. Sad that the whole area looks so badly neglected.

The Round House Conservation Plan comes to Council this Wednesday. We made a submission but cannot see anywhere in the agenda where the submissions have been dealt with and whether they made any difference.

Tent City:

The Fremantle Society, like most Portonians, was dismayed when the mayor and certain councillors allowed the Tent City debacle at Pioneer Park to develop into a nasty political stunt.

We wrote to the CEO asking questions, and it took 14 weeks and repeated reminders to get a set of unhelpful answers. 

We have written to the heritage minister, the tourism minister, and the arts minister (all the same inept David Templeman) about Pioneer Park reminding him about the various plans already passed by Council for the park, which is supposed to commemorate the builders of the Port.

We are also working on a film highlighting the significance of Pioneer Park for our history and culture.

John Dowson
The Fremantle Society

photos by John Dowson

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