LOST VENUES RUED

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Opinion -

DE­SPITE many kilo­me­tres of pic­turesque Swan River frontage and its po­si­tion as the gate­way to Perth from the east, Bel­mont has no public venues at which to en­joy a meal and a drink and take in the river view.

Thirty years ago you could go to the San­dring­ham Ho­tel and look out across the panorama of the May­lands Penin­sula; lis­ten to a band on the lawns of As­cot Inn, where fer­ries pulled in for Sun­day ses­sions; or en­joy a fam­ily bar­be­cue un­der the gums at As­cot Wa­ter Play­ground while the chil­dren splashed and played.

Un­for­tu­nately, all these venues have gone.

The San­dring­ham is now a bot­tle shop and to see May­lands Penin­sula you must walk a nar­row path over­looked by apart­ment tow­ers - none of which in­cludes a res­tau­rant or tav­ern with a river view.

At As­cot, the ob­jec­tions of the horserac­ing com­mu­nity fi­nally put paid to the inn and wa­ter play­ground, with the play­ground at which gen­er­a­tions of Bel­mont young­sters learnt to swim now a de­cay­ing mess af­ter 13 years of dis­use.

Even As­cot Race­course has no venue be­tween the track and the river to take in the view, and many river­side pic­nic ta­bles have so much un­der­growth be­tween them and the river that you can hardly see it.

The one res­tau­rant be­tween Great Eastern High­way and the river has a very lim­ited river view and is very pricey, while the kiosk at Gar­vey Park sim­ply does not count.

It is high time the coun­cil en­cour­aged a proper li­censed public venue on the Bel­mont river­bank to al­low all its ratepay­ers to en­joy fully their mag­nif­i­cent nat­u­ral as­set again. PETER HAN­COCK, Bel­mont.

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