Wallcliffe House redevelopment gets Aboriginal heritage green light

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Wallcliffe House is set to make a major comeback.
Camera IconWallcliffe House is set to make a major comeback. Credit: Supplied

The developers of Wallcliffe House have received Ministerial approval under WA’s Aboriginal heritage laws.

The consent order helps the project, which will redevelop the site into a boutique high-end resort with chalets, restaurant and a bar, move to the next stage.

However, Wadandi tribal matriarch Vivian Brockman, known as Dwardinan, believed the required Aboriginal heritage consultation undertaken with the South West Land and Sea Council wasn’t adequate.

Identifying herself as a sovereign matriarch of the Wadandi, Ms Dwardinan said the land occupied by Wallcliffe House was a sacred burial ground.

“The knowledge of this area has been passed down by past elders for generations,” she said.

“Section 5848 is a dying place of the old men and burial grounds for thousands of years.

“Collective knowledge of this is archived at the Battye Library, Perth, as well as in our own archives.”

Dwardinan said more ground probes were needed because bone fragments and scattered artefacts were found within a 10km radius in the Wainellingup area.

She has contacted Curtin University and Aboriginal heritage authorities to voice her opposition without more in-depth consultation.

A spokesperson for Voyager Estate owners Alexandra and Julian Burt’s Landsmith Collection confirmed the Section 18 application for the Aboriginal Heritage Application was approved by the Minister in March.

“This followed extensive consultation with the South West Boojarah under the instruction of experienced and respected independent consultants,” the spokesperson said.

“This has ensured we have met our obligations in the most constructive manner possible.

“We are confident that we have diligently executed our responsibilities and will continue to do so now and into the future.”

Wadandi elder and consultant Wayne Webb did not respond to Times inquiries.

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