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Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
30 October 2001
The convict-built Bunbury Timber Jetty - once the principal timber shipping port in Western Australia - will undergo a facelift which will see a key section of the jetty restored.
Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill today announced $60,000 in Commonwealth funding for the restoration works.
"To this day and even with the advent of rail, the Bunbury Timber Jetty continues to play a prominent role in the development of the town and region," Senator Hill said today in Bunbury.
"The construction of the jetty is unique, totally unlike other jetties in Western Australia and possibly Australia. Its complex system of cross beams, whalers, half caps and beams keep the jetty upright and intact and allows it to move with the tide.
"Work on the jetty will enable public access to the first 80-100 metres of the jetty for fishing and observing the world-renowned dolphins in Koombana Bay.
"The jetty, and in particular the timber piles, has suffered severe degradation. This project will restore a section of the jetty six piles wide and twelve sections long by replacing damaged piles and super structures.
"The first stage of the jetty was built by a Fremantle convict team in 1864. The jetty underwent nine extensions because of siltation of the harbour and increased trade through the port and grew to approximately 1.4 km in length.
"It was the key departure point of all produce from Bunbury and the South West region and by 1908 it was the principal timber shipping port in Western Australia," he said.
The jetty was closed to shipping in 1982 after the opening of the Inner Harbour but remains a feature of the city.
The funding is part of $3.5 million for 45 projects nationally under the Commonwealth Government's Cultural Heritage Projects Program.
Local member Geoff Prosser said the Commonwealth's funds to restore the Jetty would be warmly welcomed by the Bunbury community.
"Many of us have fond memories of fishing from the bridge with our families, and I am delighted a new generation will have that opportunity," said Mr Prosser.
"Bunbury grew up with the Timber Jetty, and in a way it is responsible for the economic development that Bunbury underwent to become the bustling regional City it is today, the Jetty really laid the foundation for our future."
"The Bunbury Jetty Preservation Society and all of its volunteers who have worked tirelessly to restore the Jetty are to be congratulated, for this grant is as much a tribute to their vision as it is to the Jetty itself," Mr Prosser said.
30 October 2001
Belinda Huppatz 0419 258 364