Hon Simon O'Brien MLC

Hon Simon O'Brien MLC

Former Minister for Finance; Commerce; Small Business

Hon John Day BSc BDSc MLA

Hon John Day BSc BDSc MLA

Former Minister for Health; Culture and the Arts

    WA heritage site to become a place of cultural reconciliation

    29/05/2012 12:00 AM
     
    • Korndin Kulluch - A Place of Reconciliation developed in consultation with traditional owners
    • Public invited to comment on future use of land at Bennett Brook

    A 235-hectare area bordering Bennett Brook, west of Midland, would become a place of reconciliation under a plan launched today by Finance Minister Simon O’Brien and Planning Minister John Day.

     

    The draft Korndin Kulluch - A Place of Reconciliation; Bennett Brook Nyungar Cultural and Environmental Concept Plan was developed following an extensive consultation process with Aboriginal groups and representatives.

     

    Mr O’Brien said the concept plan would now be released for broader community consultation before final decisions were made on ownership, funding, heritage development and planning approval.

     

    “This plan is a vital step in establishing this important cultural site as a permanent and valuable community asset,” Mr O’Brien said.

     

    “It offers the opportunity for a substantial and meaningful act of reconciliation with Aboriginal people on land that is a significant element of their spiritual and ancestral heritage.”

     

    The area covers the 35-hectare former Pyrton disability hostel site, managed by the Department of Finance’s Building Management and Works, and land managed by the Western Australian Planning Commission, including the former Swan Valley Noongar Camp site and adjacent parks and recreation land.

     

    “The Government has engaged in good faith with Noongar people who have cultural connections to the area by first asking how they believed the land should be used,” Mr Day said.

     

    The draft concept plan identifies five designated areas on the site, including:

    • a culturally restricted ceremonial area
    • a culture and learning site incorporating a memory wall and story trails
    • a land management and eco-tourism zone
    • a potential building opportunity for community or cultural purposes
    • options for returning the former Swan Valley Noongar Camp site to an environmental area with appropriate Noongar interpretation

    Mr Day said although the concept plan aimed to preserve the cultural significance of the area, the State Government did not support the use of the former camp site for residential purposes.

     

          Fact File

    • The title Korndin Kulluch captures the importance of Noongar connection to the land. ‘Korndin’ means strong; being strong; a strong connection to country. ‘Kulluch’ means home
    • The site, which overlooks the confluence of the Swan River and Bennett Brook, was part of the Hamersley family’s farmland acquired by the Government in the 1950s
    • Pyrton, a Disability Services Commission (DSC) hostel built during the 1960s, was closed in the late 1990s and the buildings later demolished. The area is recognised as part of a registered site under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972
    • The former Swan Valley Noongar camp site was closed by Act of Parliament in 2003
    • Location map and Concept Plan are available at http://www.finance.wa.gov.au/korndinkulluch 

    Finance Minister’s office - 6552 5800

    Planning Minister’s office - 6552 6200