Oval plan dropped

PLANS to sell off the fringes of East Fremantle Oval for aged housing have been abandoned—for now.

The town council dropped its plans following intense public backlash that had come to a head two weeks ago at an electors’ AGM.

Save Our A-Class Reserve convenor Damien Flynn said the group was “happy” council had listened to its ratepayers.

“We are happy the process has gone back to square one,” he told the Herald.

“Our only concern is we want council to write to the relevant minister because they should be aware of it.

“And we need to ensure that the council undertakes some decent community consultation.”

Mr Flynn said the group was never against plans to improve the grounds.

“We got painted as anti-football in Allen Street, but it must be a long street, because residents came from all over the ward,” he said.

“Something needs to be done, it’s just how they do it.”

East Fremantle Croquet club president Bill Turner said members were rapt to learn they were staying put: Their site had been slated as a new aged care village. “We are very happy with the facilities and building and we just want to get on with making full use of the new lights.”

Town mayor Alan Ferris acknowledged the “community was fiercely protective about maintaining the A-class status”.

The council will now set up a community reference group to help steer any future development.

“Council is pleased that the concept plan has ignited so much interest and passion within the local community,” he said. “There’s no doubt that the residents of East Fremantle have much to contribute to the planning process and the establishment of the community reference group will create a terrific avenue for ideas to be raised and discussed.”

This is the second time sale plans have been abandonded following uproar.

by BRENDAN FOSTER

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