Subiaco residents, council support keeping fences at Rosalie Park

Rosalie Park.
Rosalie Park.

MORE than 300 emails poured in to Subiaco councillors’ inboxes this week in support of fencing at Rosalie Park.

Mayor Penny Taylor said there had been about 10 emails against the fencing, which councillors voted to keep at Tuesday night’s meeting.

The current fencing has removable corners and spaces throughout when not in use to allow public access.

The matter was raised through a motion from Cr Hugh Richardson, which proposed staff prepare a written agreement with sporting clubs using Rosalie Park that incorporated terms of use.

Cr Richardson said there had been a failure of due process by the administration negotiating changes.

“The administration told me it didn’t need to advise the community as the community would not be affected by the fences,” he said.

The matter has been ongoing for almost six years, with concerns raised in 2012 from residents about the park.

In 2015, temporary fences were approved, which were to be assembled and taken down before and after each game day, and in December 2017 chief executive Don Burnett approved the current seasonal fence.

“We have for a few years used a temporary fence, and erected and dismantled 440m of fencing each match,” Subiaco Amateur Football Club (AFC) president Mark Cheveralls said.

“That process was conducted by many volunteers, starting at 6am for an 11am kick off; it simply is not sustainable.”

Local resident Helen Leeder said Mr Burnett was aware of a 2014 resolution that council reaffirmed its support for the community’s preference for no fences on Rosalie Park and questioned why the council had not been involved in the latest fencing decision.

“I don’t feel my councillors are respected,” she said.

Mr Burnett said public access had been kept in the area and the fence had been approved under the club’s terms of hire.

“I haven’t had a good excuse put to me about why it’s not working,” he said.

Cr Richardson’s motion was lost 3-8, with Cr Derek Nash’s alternate carried 7-4 with an addition from Cr David McMullen’s alternate.

Subiaco AFC’s fencing will stay in place for the 2018 National Premier Leagues WA season, with a review prior to the 2019 season.

Mrs Taylor said offers had been made to elected members concerned about procedural issues to meet with an independent advisor from WA Local Government Association and were not taken up.

“Moving forward, we are looking to get an outcome for both the community and our sporting clubs,” she said.

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