Website wonky

EAST FREMANTLE council’s new website has irked a local schoolgirl who fought unsuccessfully to save two historically significant Norfolk Pines on Riverside Road.

“Experience the beauty” welcomes visitors to the council’s homepage, which is replete with boasts about being “nestled on the stunning banks of Perth’s Swan River” and features an image of the waterway with the now-felled pines.

• East Fremantle council’s homepage.

• East Fremantle council’s homepage.

Petition

The trees were felled in May to make way for a garage, despite a petition from 15-year-old Tabitha Woo and outraged neighbours.

“It would be a good idea to take the photo off the website,” Ms Woo told the Herald.

“The trees were the most beautiful things on the foreshore, so to say ‘experience the beauty’ with them pictured in the background is a bit misleading.”

Cliff Collinson was the only councillor out of six to vote against the new dwellings and alterations at the historic 2334sqm site which doomed the trees.

Mayor Jim O’Neill voted for the proposal, but said his council’s hands were tied: “We have very little power to protect trees in the private domain and I am keen to find out what our residents would like to do in relation to this matter.”

He claimed the council could have been liable if it had ordered retention and branches subsequently hurt people or caused property damage.

An arborist advised the trees were “deteriorating” and had suffered decay, but further scans were needed to ascertain the full extent of damage.

by STEPHEN POLLOCK

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