The Fremantle Prison’s tunnel tours are proving a big attraction, with nearly 3,000 people exploring the labyrinth of underground tunnels since they opened to the public.
Housing and Works Minister Francis Logan said the tunnels tours were an 'extreme heritage experience' without equal in the world.
“Since I opened the tunnels in May, about 230 people every week have descended the 20m shaft and explored the unique tunnels,” Mr Logan said.
“The tunnels, which were built by convicts in the 1890s, have now become one of Australia’s most unique tourist experiences.”
The Minister also noted that the Federal Government had recently added the Fremantle Prison to its National Heritage List.
“I agree that the Fremantle Prison is a national treasure and should be lauded,” he said.
“But where has the Howard Government been in supporting this national icon? Nowhere.
“They were missing in action when it has come to the restoration works and were nowhere to be seen when the conservation plan was being formulated. When it came time to putting their hand in their pocket for the development of the master plan, the community was left wanting.
“In fact, the Federal Government has contributed nothing to Fremantle Prison over many years. Their only acknowledgment of the place was when Federal Minister Ian Campbell came over and put it on the national heritage list.
“On the other hand, the Gallop Government has spent millions of dollars on the prison and will continue working with the prison to maintain its icon status in a sustainable way.”
Minister's office: 9222 8950