SEA POOL COTTES­LOE

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Front Page - By JON BAS­SETT

SEA pool pro­po­nents now have their sights set south of Cottes­loe for the first of the shark pro­tec­tion, se­niors-health and child-friendly en­clo­sures in WA.

“Af­ter 15 years and five Cottes­loe may­ors it’s time to move on be­cause of the con­ser­vatism and the coun­cil be­ing in­flu­enced by a few peo­ple, like surfers, and those who said ‘put it on the south side of Cottes­loe Groyne’, which is an in­ap­pro­pri­ate, ex­posed site,” pool pro­po­nent Tom Locke said.

Mr Locke saw the shark at­tack that killed Ken Crew at North Cottes­loe in 2000.

Af­ter that he and a small band of older, non-po­lit­i­cal daily sea swim­mers lob­bied and ar­gued for a sea pool com­pris­ing sev­eral de­signs on the north, shel­tered side of the groyne.

The cam­paign in­cluded links with another group ad­vo­cat­ing a pool on the beach’s grassed ter­races that failed sev­eral years ago.

A pool un­der the ar­ti­fi­cial cliffs at Mos­man Park Beach and Fre­man­tle’s Bather’s Beach are now be­ing mooted for an Olympic-sized sea­wa­ter pool po­ten­tially heated by bores reach­ing hot un­der­ground rocks.

Mr Locke said the pool could be sim­i­lar to that be­ing re­de­vel­oped at Austin­mer Beach in Wol­lon­gong.

As well as the health and life­style ben­e­fits, it could help al­le­vi­ate peo­ple’s shark fears.

He said it would give se­niors and the dis­abled a long-dis­tance swim­ming fa­cil­ity, and pro­vide a safe spot for chil­dren.

Mos­man Park Mayor Ron Nor­ris and Fre­man­tle’s Brad Pet­titt were over­seas, but a spokesman for the port city said a Bather’s Beach ocean pool was part of the long-term vi­sion Freo 2029 Trans­for­ma­tional Move, but fund­ing had not been de­ter­mined.

ANY­ONE who has swum in one of the east coast’s sea pools knows what fan­tas­tic com­mu­nity fa­cil­i­ties they are for pro­mot­ing a healthy life­style. They are found from the NSW south coast up to Queens­land and are pop­u­lar with ev­ery­one from morn­ing lap ad­dicts to se­niors look­ing for calm wa­ter and par­ents need­ing a safe place for their chil­dren to swim. That a suit­able lo­ca­tion can­not be found for one in Perth, whether at Cottes­loe’s fore­shore or far­ther south or north, is an easy tar­get for the old ac­cu­sa­tion about liv­ing in ‘(W)ait (A)while’. Fund­ing will need to be found to build and main­tain the fa­cil­ity and a shel­tered lo­ca­tion is needed. But as Coogee’s shark bar­rier has shown, the pub­lic will travel great dis­tances to a suit­able and safe beach fa­cil­ity. Build it, and they will plunge in. Jon Bas­sett - Re­porter

Pic­ture: Jon Bas­sett

Sea pool pro­po­nents led by Tom Locke are now look­ing for a site south of Cottes­loe.

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