Festival in full swing

Photo Roel Loopers

The Fremantle Heritage Festival is in full swing with events that are both varied and interesting.  The one thing in common with all events is the high quality.  Last night’s awards night at B Shed showcased some of the best work in written and built heritage, the Fremantle Society notched up another win with Fighting for Fremantle as authors Dianne & Ron Davidson took out Winner of Published work Award.  The Built categories were full of wow factor and it was inspirational to see so many young people investing in high quality heritage restoration and renovation.  Alan Kelsall was acknowledged for his tireless work on restoring some of Fremantle’s heritage icons.  Guests enjoyed beautiful food from Tasty Express B Shed while enjoying the stunning ambience of a beautiful evening in the Port.

The previous night’s weather was quite the opposite, but a large crowd braved the storms to attend the Fremantle History Society’s event in J Shed where Greg James explained his work in bronze sculpture.  He went through his techniques of getting to know his subject using his current project on Maria Montessori as an example.  The man is a genius.

Bernard Carney charmed a full town hall with his songs and stories, he excelled himself and the audience had a great time.

The Fremantle History Society and Fremantle Society’s Open Heritage Doors attracted a core group of over 100 people go from place to place and see inside some of Fremantle’s great heritage buildings.  Starting with about 130 people in Samson House to the very popular National Hotel where close to 200 took the opportunity to get inside and hear Gerard MacCann tell the story of its rebuild from burnt-out ruin.  Lionel Samson’s had to run 2 talks to accommodate all the interest.

Heritage QandA explored some issues close to Fremantle’s heart on how heritage can play its part in the revitalisation of Fremantle.  I thank the Panellists Carmen Lawrence, Linley Lutton, Lynn MacLaren, Brad Pettitt, Greg Smith, Anne Brake and Moderator Robyn Johnston for their involvement and Deckchair for their Bar and Venue at Victoria Hall.

Still to come is Friday afternoon’s Club Crawl. Noon on Saturday go to King’s Square to see the Arthur Grady motorcycle ride and display.  Don’s Tram Tours on Saturday are filling up fast, then dance the night away at Hilton’s Retro Dance.

The 2011 Heritage Festival has again demonstrated the importance of an independent Heritage Festival in Fremantle, resist the push for amalgamation.

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