Work it out over a cuppa

THANK you for your lead article highlighting an important cultural and heritage issue for Maylands and indeed, for WA.

However, it’s unfortunate that the “tea wars” angle on proposals to convert the Peninsula teahouse portrays Maylands residents and others in a squabble that we don’t need or want to have. 

Everyone has a right to express her or his points of view.

I understand that a key issue underlying the WA National Trust’s proposal is lack of funds to complete its restoration of Tranby House.

Their plan to address the problem neglected to first consult residents, wildlife and urban bushland experts and other important stakeholders. 

I am a Maylands resident who supports retaining and renovating the Peninsula Teahouse building. It is seriously run down. 

A liquor license combined with extended trading hours are residential location.  

I walk by Tranby House several times a week. Before the Peninsula Teahouse closed it was well attended by local families, cyclists, kayakers and various groups. Its festive high teas for special occasions (byo alcohol) were booked months ahead. 

It nestles by Tranby House/ museum, which attracts tourist buses, school groups and other visitors. The teahouse is not a heritage building, it is a converted caretaker’s cottage styled in keeping with Tranby House. 

Tasteful renovation, new furniture and improved kitchen facilities will enable the tea house to be better utilised.      

The lessees will improve online ratings by providing a wider range of fine foods, fresh produce and speedy service.  

Holes to anchor the removable umbrellas shading tables on the bricked area beyond the oak tree will prevent them blowing over.  

I see no need to pave the rectangle containing the old oak tree, or extend cover beneath its branches. 

The cafe could provide a niche outlet for quality local and WA art and craft work. Information on hand about the traditional custodians of country, settlement times and later history and ecology of the peninsula would enrich customers’ knowledge of place.

Aboriginal people lived and raised their children along the Derryl Yerrigan for countless years, employing land use practices in balance with nature. 

Speaking truth about the whole of colonial history and including Aboriginal people’s perspectives and stories is an essential part of WA’s reconciliation journey. 

We are told that the traditional custodians of the land have been consulted. 

In the spirit of respect and reconciliation I hope that we will soon hear their views.

Helen Oxnam
Hardey Rd, Maylands

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