Handrail dispute continues to affect Cordingley’s Surf in Scarborough

Wayne Bowen outside Cordingley’s Surf. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au   d446390
Wayne Bowen outside Cordingley’s Surf. Picture: Andrew Ritchie        www.communitypix.com.au d446390

WORK to reinstate the main entry to Cordingley’s Surf in Scarborough will begin later this month, but owner Wayne Bowen says neither the City of Stirling nor his landlord has given him a start date.

Mr Bowen, long-time owner of Cordingley’s Surf, said he had been “caught in the middle” of a dispute over the handrails to the main entry between the City of Stirling and landlord Far East Hospitality Properties (Australia).

“We have had an independent expert conclude that our lost business since the chain has been put in place (across the main entry) is 25 to 30 per cent,” Mr Bowen said.

The Trigg resident said he had received no word on when the works would begin.

“It is my understanding that Far East took the council to State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) and it was rejected.

“We have heard that the City of Stirling and the landlord have reached an agreement, the information we’ve been given is that is requires two to three weeks work in front of our store changing the levels of the footpath.”

Mr Bowen said the City of Stirling advised him that the matter was in the hands of the landlord.

“We have tried to discuss compensation with the landlord, but until we went to the State Administrative Tribunal last week they denied any liability and claimed that in any event it would not have damaged our business.

“We now will be going forward to the tribunal for a hearing on this matter seeking compensation. However this is a long, expensive and process, which with a reasonable approach by the landlord could have been avoided.”

Stirling approvals manager Greg Bowering confirmed the SAT application had been withdrawn and works were due to start on November 30.

“The city is now waiting on the consultant (The Planning Group on behalf of Far East Hospitality Properties) to lodge an application for verge treatment,” Mr Bowering said. “The city has issued a permit for verge pavement alterations to allow the owners to re-install the handrails.

“They have 90 days to complete works.”

Mr Bowen said it was “unbelievable” he had not yet been informed the works would start.

“They’ve had 20 months to date to do it and all of a sudden they pick the busiest retail time in our calendar year,” he said. “We haven’t been advised any dates.

“Last week they advised us the process was still a long way off and therefore it wouldn’t impact on our busy summer trade.

“Work disrupting the front of our store over this summer period would be catastrophic.”

Because the entry to his shop had been blocked for so long, Mr Bowen put out a small A-frame sign so customers could see the business was open.

He said city rangers informed him the sign broke regulations and he could be fined if he kept it.

Stirling community safety manager Laurie Crouch said the sign was not permissible under section 3.2 of the Thoroughfares and Public Places Local Law.

Far East Hospitality Properties (Australia) did not return calls from the Stirling Times.