Picture: Chidlow local Tony Arndt with Swan Hills MLA Jessica Shaw.
Media release: Call to heritage list Chidlow war camps
SWAN Hills MLA Jessica Shaw recently raised the need to recognise and protect Chidlow’s historic military camps in Parliament with Heritage Minister David Templeman, following her visit to the Camps with local heritage heroes Bob Sheppard and Tony Arndt.
The Shire of Mundaring has permitted private development of the site where training camp four was located and much of the heritage value of that camp has been destroyed.
Ms Shaw asked the Heritage Minister for clarification on the role of local government and State Government in safeguarding places of historical or heritage significance.
Speaking in Parliament on December 2, Ms Shaw said the people of Chidlow were proud of their links to the nation’s defence and each year commemorated the service of men and women at the State’s newest RSL branch set up in Chidlow.
“Many people are concerned the appropriate steps were not taken to include the site on the Shire’s municipal inventory and it was, therefore, unprotected,” she said.
In response, Mr Templeman said prior to the Heritage Act 2019 coming into effect, the Chidlow camp site was not listed on the State Register or the Municipal Inventory of the Shire of Mundaring.
However, following a public nomination, the Heritage Council was due to assess the site for heritage listing at its December meeting.
Mr Templeman also voiced concerns about any mixed messages the Shire of Mundaring may be sending to the community about the council’s role in heritage issues.
“Local governments have a critical role in heritage acknowledgement, because one of the things they are now required to do under the new act—a McGowan Government achievement in heritage—is to maintain heritage surveys, which replace heritage inventories,” he said.
“I would urge the Shire to understand its role in not only maintaining its heritage survey, but also be looking very actively at other sites that need and warrant consideration to be on that list,” Mr Templeman said. “This site should be on the list; that is the reality.”
The new Heritage Act provides a protection against demolition by neglect and retains the same penalty regime with fines of up to $1 million.
Media contact: Jessica Shaw 9296 7688