Councillor weighs in on Brass Bell gate access row
KALK BAY ward councillor Aimee Kuhl has slated the Brass Bell restaurant, confirming there had been “long-standing public access issues at the Brass Bell”.
Kalk Bay residents and business owners this week lifted the lid on what they deemed discriminatory practices by the Brass Bell for years. Locals lambasted the restaurant for blocking mainly Cape Flats families from accessing the beach over the holidays. On New Year’s Day, a gate to public toilets, which was locked, had to be opened by law enforcement officers, with authorities saying control over the gate rested with the harbour master.
Weighing in on the matter in a letter to The Star’s sister paper, the Cape Times, Kuhl said: “The Brass Bell was found to be in direct contravention of an existing memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between the city, Tony White (the owner) and Prasa (which owns the land).”
She said recommendations were made in November but remained to be actioned. These included securing the tidal pool and beach as public space. “We will continue to urge Prasa (Passenger Rail Agency of SA), in conjunction with the Brass Bell, to adhere to the requirements of the MoU,” she said.
Local resident Steve Herbert said his concern over this holiday period has been that the gate has been locked, denying the public the use of the recognised public walkway from the station subway to the Harbour Beach. “The MoU, as far as I know, says this gate should be open to all during the day. The city must deal with this. The matter of the locked gate must be clarified so this doesn’t happen again,” he said.
White and Prasa did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publication.