Don’t ruin our wreck

North Coast Times - - FRONT PAGE - Lucy Jarvis

A CON­SER­VA­TION Or­der on a cen­tury-old tim­ber shipwreck in Yanchep means van­dals could face penal­ties up to $1 mil­lion and two years in prison. A gale blew the Alex T.

Brown ashore in 1917 and the wreck is usu­ally buried un­der sand on the beach south of The Spot.

WA Mu­seum started an in­ves­ti­ga­tion for greater pro­tec­tion last year after the Times re­ported the wreck had been van­dalised when ex­posed fol­low­ing storms.

Two Rocks res­i­dent Pam An­nes­ley and her daugh­ter Ruth dis­cov­ered the dam­age in Au­gust 2017, caused by some­one us­ing a chain­saw to cut off the ribs.

“Ruth and I come down here reg­u­larly; we are al­ways tak­ing pho­tos. I en­joy com­ing down here to take pho­tos and keep an eye on it; it’s worth pre­serv­ing for the his­tory of the area,” she said.

Her­itage Min­is­ter David Tem­ple­man is sched­uled to to­day an­nounce a Con­ser­va­tion Or­der over the wreck, which pro­hibits de­mo­li­tion, dam­age or al­ter­ation.

“The Con­ser­va­tion Or­der will help the WA Mu­seum to pro­tect the wreck of the Alex T. Brown, which is of great sig­nif­i­cance to the mar­itime his­tory of WA, from any fur­ther dam­age,” he said.

“The wreck tells an im­por­tant story as­so­ci­ated with the devel­op­ment of the north­ern Perth area, as sim­ple houses and home­steads in the Wan­neroo district built dur­ing the early 20th cen­tury used ma­te­ri­als sal­vaged from it. Peo­ple who dam­age a place that is pro­tected by a Con­ser­va­tion Or­der can be pros­e­cuted with a $1m fine and two years’ im­pris­on­ment.”

Mr Tem­ple­man said more “cul­tural war­riors” like the An­nes­leys were needed to keep an eye on his­tor­i­cal sites and that the wreck was “in rel­a­tively good nick”.

“The ship has laid here for 101 years; peo­ple need to re­spect the fact it’s here. These things are im­por­tant to pro­tect,” he said.

Butler MLA John Quigley, Pam An­nes­ley, Wan­neroo Deputy Mayor Nat San­galli, Her­itage Min­is­ter David Tem­ple­man and Wan­neroo Mayor Tracey Roberts at the wreck of the Alex T. Brown.

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