Revitalised Foreshore Officially Open

Revitalised Foreshore Officially Open

The newly revitalised Rockingham Beach Foreshore was officially opened on Thursday 26 September 2019, with the City of Rockingham hosting a ceremony to mark the occasion.

As one of the most significant projects ever undertaken by the City, stage one of the $15.75 million Rockingham Beach Foreshore Revitalisation comprised three main areas with works taking place on Railway Terrace, the Beach Plaza and the Boardwalk.

To formally signal the opening of the revitalised foreshore precinct, City of Rockingham Mayor Barry Sammels was joined by Senator Matt O’Sullivan, the Honourable Simon O’Brien MLC, fellow councillors and members of the Aboriginal Advisory Group.


Rockingham Foreshore


Mayor Barry Sammels said the opening of the revitalised foreshore was a landmark moment in the City’s history.

The Rockingham Beach Foreshore Revitalisation was an exciting and long awaited enhancement to the City’s most popular location,” Mayor Sammels said.

“The official opening ceremony was an opportunity to celebrate the beginning of a new era at the Foreshore as well as being a chance to honour the long standing connection that Nyoongar people have with this beautiful area.


Rockingham Foreshore


“The City gratefully acknowledges the Australian Government’s contribution of funding through the National Stronger Regions Fund and also thanks civil engineering contractor Ertech, the landscape design team from Place Laboratory and the City’s own staff for delivering the project.”

A special two-day Foreshore Celebration will be held for the community on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 October 2019. The event will be held in conjunction with the launch of the Castaways Sculpture Awards exhibition and will feature free entertainment and activities for people of all ages.


Rockingham Foreshore



Danjoo-Interwoven Exhibition Comes to Rockingham

Danjoo-Interwoven Exhibition Comes to Rockingham

City of Rockingham residents will be able to immerse themselves in a variety of spectacular Aboriginal artworks when the City hosts the Danjoo-Interwoven exhibition at the Rockingham Arts Centre from Wednesday 10 July to Sunday 28 July 2019

Held in partnership with the Mundaring Arts Centre, Danjoo Interwoven showcases the work of emerging, mid-career and established Aboriginal artists working in multi-disciplinary art forms.

Danjoo celebrates Nyoongar culture, connection to country and visual arts practices in the south west corner of Western Australia. Visitors to the exhibition will be able to see this connection clearly, as a number of the artists involved are either from or now living in the local area.

Mayor Barry Sammels encouraged residents to visit Danjoo-Interwoven throughout July to learn more about Nyoongar culture.

“The exhibition coincides with the end of NAIDOC Week 2019 and mirrors the intentions of NAIDOC Week by celebrating the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal people,” Mayor Sammels said.

“There will be some truly fantastic artistic skills on display and the exhibition presents a wonderful opportunity for the Rockingham community to connect and engage with a number of thought-provoking pieces.”

The Danjoo-Interwoven exhibition was originally launched at the Midland Junction Arts Centre in April 2019 and will be curated by Wadandi/Minang/Koreng Bibbulmun artist Lea Taylor and former Mundaring Arts Centre curator Greg Sikich.

Danjoo-Interwoven will be open daily from 10am–3pm at the Rockingham Arts Centre.

Find out about other NAIDOC Week events happening in the City.


City to Celebrate NAIDOC Week 2019

City to Celebrate NAIDOC Week 2019

The City of Rockingham will proudly host a number of community events to celebrate NAIDOC Week 2019, with residents across the City invited to attend.

NAIDOC Week celebrations are held across Australia each July and give people the opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.

The theme of NAIDOC Week in 2019 is Voice. Treaty. Truth. Let’s work together for a shared future. This theme acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have always wanted an enhanced role in decision making in Australia’s democracy.

Mayor Barry Sammels said the City was delighted to be participating in a series of events that focused on bringing the community closer together.

“The City of Rockingham recognises the deep, ongoing connection that Nyoongar people have to this region, and the links of people living here today, with a long line of ancestors,” Mayor Sammels said.

“Rockingham is a wonderful, diverse community and NAIDOC Week represents a fantastic opportunity for people of all ages and backgrounds to come together and learn more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture.

“While NAIDOC Week will officially be held from 7 – 14 July, the City will be hosting multiple events throughout June, July and August so residents have the best possible chance to participate in a series of exciting activities.”


NAIDOC Week events

City of Rockingham events celebrating NAIDOC Week include:


Rockingham NAIDOC Celebration Event

When: Thursday 4 July 2019
Where: Gary Holland Community Centre
Time: 10.30am – 1.30pm
Come along and celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, culture and community. Cultural performances, fun activities and food available.


Cultural Walking Tour – Point Peron

When: Friday 12 July 2019
Where: Point Peron, Rockingham
Time: 4.30pm – 6pm
Suitable for all ages, this guided tour will give an in-depth perspective of Point Peron. Participants will receive a spiritual introduction to the land and sea while enjoying Nyoongar language and traditional dream time stories. Free event. Bookings essential.


Art Exhibition “Danjoo-Interwoven”

When: Wednesday 10 July – Sunday 28 July 2019
Where: Rockingham Arts Centre
Time: 10am – 3pm daily
Danjoo – Interwoven celebrates local Aboriginal culture, country, language and visual arts practice in WA. Artworks by 18 Aboriginal artists will be on display. Free event.


Native Herbs and Spices Workshop

When: Thursday 25 July 2019
Where: Mary Davies Library and Community Centre
Time: 2pm – 3pm
Join Marissa Verma from Bindi Bindi to learn about native herbs and spices and their uses in food and medicine. Free event. Bookings essential.


Film Screening – “Jasper Jones”

When: Thursday 1 August 2019
Where: Safety Bay Library
Time: 12pm – 2pm
Come celebrate the 2019 NAIDOC theme – ‘Voice, Treaty, Truth’ with a special screening of a landmark award winning feature film Jasper Jones. Free event. Refreshments provided.


Act-Belong-Commit Cooking Workshop

When: Thursday 1 August 2019
Where: Autumn Centre, Rockingham
Time: 5pm – 8pm
Join Dale Tilbrook from Maalinup Aboriginal Gallery as she shares a wealth of knowledge about native foods and Aboriginal land management, while cooking an easy and nutritional meal to enjoy. Free event. Bookings essential.


Weaving Workshop

When: Sunday 4 August 2019
Where: Warnbro Community Library
Time: 2pm – 5pm
Learn the art of contemporary Aboriginal weaving using natural and hand dyed raffia with award winning Aboriginal Artist Lea Taylor. Bookings essential. Cost $5.50 pp. Suitable for 18+.

For more information about these events or to book your place contact 9528 0333.


May 2019 Summary

May 2019 Summary

May was a huge month, I’ve now officially attended more than 500 meetings and events since joining Council in October 2017.

With attendance at a number of City events, chairing Advisory Committees, School Board meetings, community & business events and meetings with local residents every day brings new challenges. There’s never a dull moment. Well reading 100’s of pages of reports can be a little tedious, but when you’re interested in the subject, it helps a lot.

Highlights from May 2019


Rockingham Kwinana Chamber of Commerce Key Leaders In Business Breakfast

A Key Leaders in Breakfast event was held on 2 May 2019 at Hotel Clipper. Greg Hire, Vice-Captain of the Perth Wildcats and Founder of the Not for Profit group ‘A Stitch in Time’ was proposed to be the guest speaker however in great news, he was selected to play basketball in the US representing Australia and was unable to attend. Gary Gray AO, External Affairs General Manager at Mineral Resources stepped in to provide an informative presentation. 

RKCC Business Breakfast May 2019

Cr Andy Burns and Tracy Lindsey of Off The Beaten Track WA


Tourism Rockingham “Tourism at Twilight” Event

The Hotel Clipper and Tourism Rockingham held a joint event to promote Rockingham and help raise funds for the Rockingham Visitors Centre.

12 artists from across WA participated in the event drawing inspiration for their art from various West Australian Tourism Regions. Two of the three judges flew in from interstate and were joined by the CEO of Destination Perth. The inaugural event was a big success with all available tickets sold, and it caused quite a stir in the WA Tourism industry.  I suspect next years event will be even bigger.

Tourism Rockingham / Hotel Clipper Body Art Exhibition

Tourism Rockingham / Hotel Clipper Body Art Exhibition – Wonders of WA


Australian Citizenship Ceremony #1 & #2

With so many people wanting to call Rockingham home, the City held two Citizenship Ceremonies during the month of May. Some of the people I spoke to were keen to become Australian Citizens as soon as they could, whereas others were a little more relaxed. One gentleman I spoke to had lived in Coolongup for nearly 50 years before deciding it was time to ‘make it official’.

Rockingham City Pipe Band at the Rockingham Citizenship Ceremony May 2019

Rockingham City Pipe Band at the Rockingham Citizenship Ceremony May 2019


Cooloongup Primary School P&C Meeting

It was a little surreal being back at Cooloongup Primary School again earlier this month for the P&C Meeting. Especially since the meetings are held in what was once my year 7 class.

The Cooloongup Primary School P&C are full of enthusiasm with new committee members taking on the roles of President, Secretary and Treasurer, but they’re always on the lookout for more members. You don’t have to have children at the school, if you’ve got a little time on your hands and you’d like to help out they can be contacted via reception.

Cooloongup Primary School

Cooloongup Primary School


Junior Council #1 & #2

I spent time with both the Junior Council sessions this month and was really impressed by how well they spoke as they debated the issues that were important to them. I don’t think it’s right to take pictures at the Junior Council events because they’re not my kids, so no pictures to share, but I’m expecting big things from these two groups.

The Junior Council program has been running in the City since it began in 1989 with 12 students and has grown with the community to involve more than 60 Year Six students from local primary schools and alternative education settings.


May Ordinary Council Meeting

Every Council meeting is important, but this one was particularly special to me as not only did we endorse the Tourism Destination Strategy that I’ve been passionate about since the start, but we adopted the Single Use Plastics Policy that is in my opinion a great first step in making Rockingham a much more environmentally safe place. To me these two decisions go hand in hand.

The bulk of our tourism offering is based around our beautiful natural coastline, the Rockingham Foreshore, Cape Peron, and the Shoalwater Islands Marine Park. By banning the release of helium balloons and the use of single use plastics we are helping to protect out natural assets. Having been a big supporter of the plastics ban, and having hosted the first free screening of Rubber Jellyfish here in WA, I’m over the moon to see the policy is now in place.

Cr Joy Stewart, Lisa Hills of Boycott Balloons and Cr Andy Burns

Cr Joy Stewart, Lisa Hills of Boycott Balloons and Cr Andy Burns at the screening of Rubber Jellyfish



A complete list of my May meetings.

A full list of all 501 meetings since October 2017 is available here.


  1. Rockingham Kwinana Chamber of Commerce Key Leaders In Business Breakfast
  2. Official opening of “Noongar Country: Wetland Glimpses”
  3. Cooloongup Community Safety Talk by Rockingham Police
  4. Global Friendship Committee Meeting
  5. Meeting with Hillman Resident
  6. Tourism Rockingham “Tourism at Twilight” Event
  7. 2019 City of Rockingham Art Awards
  8. Australian Citizenship Ceremony #1
  9. Rockingham PCYC Committee Meeting
  10. Australian Citizenship Ceremony #2
  11. Meeting with Secret Harbour Resident
  12. Cooloongup Primary School P&C Meeting
  13. Rockingham Arts Centre, Twilight Arts
  14. CitySafe Advisory Committee Meeting
  15. Councillor Engagement Session
  16. Rockingham Kwinana Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours
  17. Westport Information Session
  18. Meeting with Warnbro Resident
  19. National Walk Safely To School Day, Warnbro Primary School
  20. Meeting with Cooloongup Resident
  21. Planning and Engineering Services Committee Meeting
  22. Corporate & Community Development Committee Meeting
  23. Junior Council #1
  24. Mature Adults Learning Association Volunteer Morning Tea
  25. Meeting with Rockingham Foreshore Business Owners
  26. Junior Council #2
  27. Warnbro Primary School Board Meeting
  28. Volunteer Recognition Celebration
  29. Tourism Rockingham Board Meeting
  30. Meeting with Rockingham Resident
  31. Hillman Primary School P&C AGM
  32. Rockingham Nyoongar Stories Exhibition Launch
  33. ECU Student Radio Interview
  34. Meeting with Rockingham Museum
  35. Ordinary Council Meeting


As always, if you’d like to reach me to discuss anything of importance to you, I’d be more than happy to hear from you. Facebook, Twitter, Email, or just pick up the phone and give me a ring 0467 511 867.

Rockingham Nyoongar Stories Exhibition

Rockingham Nyoongar Stories Exhibition

The stories of Nyoongar people with a connection to Rockingham will be on display throughout National Reconciliation Week 2019, as the Rockingham Central Library hosts the Rockingham Nyoongar Stories Exhibition from 25 May–1 June.

Comprising audio material and photographic portraits, the exhibition will feature 10 local Nyoongar people sharing stories about their lives and experiences.

In addition to the exhibition, the audio material created through the project will be made available through the City of Rockingham Library catalogue as an online resource for the whole community. Transcripts of each of the stories will also be produced, and a compilation CD has been created using excerpts from each of the stories shared.

Mayor Barry Sammels encouraged the community to come along, listen and view the exhibition during National Reconciliation Week.

“National Reconciliation Week is an opportunity for people throughout the community to come together and the Rockingham Nyoongar Stories Exhibition will help residents learn more about the history and culture of Nyoongar people,” Mayor Sammels said.

“The stories shared in the exhibition are personal and in some places are about profoundly painful experiences that have shaped lives. They also speak of courage, resilience, joy, pride and the enjoyment of simple pleasures.

“Through these stories we also get to hear about the deep, ongoing connection that Nyoongar people have to this region, and cultural knowledge that links people living here today with a long line of ancestors.”

The City engaged oral historian Jemma King and project coordinator Ivy Penny to work with local Nyoongar community members to record their stories for the exhibition.

Photography for the project was contributed by Trevor Walley and Hannah Salt, with musical material supplied by Justin Martin.

“The City’s Aboriginal Advisory Group played a central role in making this project happen and the City thanks all of the members for contributing their ideas, their knowledge and their valuable time, to make sure it was successful,” Mayor Sammels said.

“The City is currently in the process of developing its third Reconciliation Action Plan. Our consultations with the community, and with City staff, have highlighted the importance of increasing community cultural awareness.”

“Providing opportunities such as this exhibition, and the audio material that has been created through the project, is an important step towards achieving this.”

The exhibition is open from 9am–7pm on Monday to Thursday, 9am–5pm on Friday and 9am–12pm on Saturday.

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