Aubrey slams ‘weak’ MPs for wave park loss

MELVILLE mayor Russell Aubrey has slammed the McGowan government for its “weak” MPs who helped kill off plans for a wave park in Alfred Cove.

The mayor didn’t hold back as he addressed a crowd of about 150 wave park supporters who’d gathered at Tompkins Park earlier this month to protest against lands minister Ben Wyatt’s decision not to give proponent Urbnsurf access to a parcel of government-owned land at the site.

Mr Aubrey said local MPs had succumbed to the dubious tactics of “pressure groups” while he and fellow supporters within the council had stood firm.

“Of course that bullying goes on to the parliamentarians, and of course we know how weak they are; they have been very weak our local members; they have not supported this, they crumbled,” Mr Aubrey said.

Urging supporters not to give up the fight to have the park built in Melville, the mayor said he’d experienced wide support across the city.

He told the crowd that no one had been interested in the small block of land owned by the government until they realised it could be used to cruel the project.

“One thousand, four hundred square metres of that land is already sectioned off and you would see it as part of the bowling club; their redundant bowling greens and the trapeze school which no longer functions,” Mr Aubrey said.

“If’s sectioned off from the community that can’t use it.

“The minister wants the community to get use of that land? My goodness me, give it to the wave park; let’s build it and let the community get use of that 3500sqm of land in a way they never have before.”

Urbnsurf founder Andrew Ross at first appeared to kill off the reason for the protest by saying Mr Wyatt’s decision made it “impossible” to build at Tompkins Park before correcting himself and saying it would be “very difficult”.

Mr Ross said he’d met with Mr Wyatt twice to discuss other potential locations across Perth, but said the city’s small population made making a site as suitable as Alfred Cove very difficult to find.

by STEVE GRANT

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