SURF lifesavers wasted no time moving into their new digs overlooking Yanchep Lagoon last weekend before the first nippers session of the season.
Yanchep Surf Life Saving Club president John Heesters said they received keys last Friday and a dozen members helped moved in on Saturday, with nippers taking place on Sunday.
“We had our first patrol out of the new club and nippers on Sunday,” he said.
“We are very happy with our new facility.
“We are 100 per cent better off than we were – the old building was very run down and we were outgrowing it.”
Mr Heesters said while there was still a lot of work to do setting up inside the new club, they were looking forward to being more “high profile” in the community at the Brazier Road building.
He said they hoped that would lead to more people joining the club, particularly volunteers interested in becoming patrol members.
The City of Wanneroo’s community and place director Debbie Terelinck said there might still be minor works required during the defects liability period.
“Construction of the surf club has been complicated due to a change of building contractor,” she said.
“As such, works were affected and the overall project was delayed.
“The City plans to host an official opening, in conjunction with the surf club, in early 2018.”
Bistel Construction finished the building after the City terminated the contract with the original builder in 2016.
Mrs Terelinck said the council approved a budget of $7.9 million for the project, and the final cost was yet to be determined.
Two Rocks Yanchep Residents Association members have previously raised concerns about the scale of the building, but at last month’s AGM, president Peter Wimsett said the finished building looked “much better”.
Abalone season opens this Saturday
THE recreational abalone fishing season opens this Saturday following a restructure to improve fisher safety.
The one-hour fishing sessions were previously held over five Sundays from November to March, but this year, there will be four Saturday sessions, starting on December 9.
The other dates set by Fisheries will be January 13 then February 3 and 17, with the 15,500 people who have taken out licences allowed to catch abalone between 7am and 8am on those dates only.
Yanchep Surf Life Saving Club president John Heesters said across the board it was a good idea, although it would affect smaller clubs like Yanchep that normally only patrol on Sundays.
Mr Heesters said the change of date would hopefully lead to fewer people on the reef and the criteria to close the fishery if conditions were not safe would reduce the risks for patrol volunteers as well as fishers.
In October, Fisheries Minister Dave Kelly announced the changes to the 2017-18 West Coast Zone recreational abalone fishing season to improve safety, following a significant review of the fishery.
“Surf Life Saving WA, Recfishwest and the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development have worked collaboratively on these changes to find the balance between fisher safety, fisher amenity and the sustainability of the fishery,” he said.
“Importantly from now on if poor weather conditions are forecast, we will close the fishery – we won’t put fishers or Surf Life Saving WA volunteers’ lives at risk.”
Mr Kelly said the department would act on SLSWA advice to close and reschedule fishing days if needed.
“I urge abalone fishers to think safety at all times as they seek this seafood delicacy – it’s not worth risking your life for any fish,” he said.
Visit www.fish.wa.gov.au for more.
ABALONE FISHING 2017-18
Fishing open between 7am and 8am:
December 9, 2017
January 13, 2018
February 3, 2018
February 17, 2018