Centre sell-off?

BAYSWATER council bureaucrats have recommended selling the Maylands Autumn Centre, irking the Lions Club and Cr Catherine Ehrhardt.

City officers say the seniors centre is too close to The RISE, which opened in 2011, and there is an oversupply of local facilities.

They have recommended having one city-run seniors organisation operating out of existing centres in Morley and Bayswater, which will be upgraded.

Lions Club president Alex Raymond says they hold meetings in the Autumn Centre and don’t want to move.

“We don’t feel happy about it,” he says.

We have all the elderly pensioners who use the building and now they will have to move to the Senior Citizen’s Club in Bayswater or Morley.

“They are elderly people and they’ll have to travel by bus or by train to get to the centre.

“The Autumn Centre was much more available and much more feasible.”

• Catherine Ehrhardt and other locals hope the Maylands Autumn Centre won’t be sold by Bayswater council. Photo by Steve Grant

Cr Ehrhardt says there is no oversupply of facilities and The RISE and the Autumn Centre cater for different groups.

“The RISE is a sporting centre and it’s a function centre; it’s not a community centre,” Cr Ehrhardt says.

“When I say community I mean grass roots level, small groups, centrally located, two-minute walk to the train station, the cafes, the chemist, the post office…. at the Maylands Autumn Centre it’s all right there on the doorstep. It’s a lot better located for public transport because of mobility issues as well.”

Cr Ehrhardt added that the Autumn Centre was the only asset that Bayswater council owned on that side of town.

The Maylands Autumn Club dissolved earlier this year, after the committee stepped down and no one wanted to run it.

“Many people were happy to keep using the club but no one wanted to form a leadership committee,” says Cr Ehrhardt.

“But many people say they weren’t even aware dissolution was on the table, and if they were, they would have stepped up for the committee.”

Officers have recommended that future community facilities should be located at the RISE, but Cr Erhardt’s prepared an alternative motion to keep the autumn centre and look for other groups who want to use it.

The vote will be held Wednesday night, when we go to print, so check perthvoiceinteractive.com for an update.

by MOLLY SCHMIDT

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