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Bulletin - Vol 8 No. 6
November/December 2005


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Cape Jaffa Platform saved

by Kristie Eggleston, LoA Inc Webmaster / Bulletin Editor

Gannet chicks on the Margaret Brock Reef Platform
300 pairs of gannet chicks on the Cape Jaffa Platform
Photo: Robert Mock

Lighthouses of Australia Inc has been supporting the efforts of Robert Mock in saving the Cape Jaffa Lighthouse Platform on the Margaret Brock Reef near Kingston SE in South Australia for some time, with the campaign documented via the Bulletin. He garnered support from many people, including local politicians, and gained much media attention in newspapers and on radio. His evocative photograph of the platform and its resident gannets (right) became the "image" of the campaign.

Over the last six weeks, the Cape Jaffa Lighthouse Platform (Civil Liability) Bill was passed through both the Lower and Upper Houses of the South Australian Parliament, leading the way to the saving of the Cape Jaffa Platform.

LoA Inc congratulates Robert and his supporters in this outstanding achievement. Robert continued to campaign for the saving of the platform, not only for its historical place in South Australia's maritime history, but as the home of hundreds of nesting birds, in the face of adversity and defeat, illogical arguments and bureaucratic red-tape.

The passing of the bill through both houses was reported on the ABC website:

More moves afoot to protect lighthouse platform   Bill saves south-east lighthouse platform

Friday, 21 October 2005

The 133-year-old Cape Jaffa lighthouse platform is one step closer to being saved.

State Parliament's Lower House has passed a bill absolving the platform's owner of the public liability claims. The bill must now pass the Upper House.

The Maritime Safety Authority marked the platform for demolition, claiming it had become a safety risk, but faced opposition for the plan from residents and politicians. 

The Member for MacKillop, Mitch Williams, says he now expects local government will feel more confident in taking responsibility for the platform when the legislation is created.

"In my opinion that will save the structure," he said.

"The problem with the lighthouse platform is that no-one wants to own it or control it purely because of public liability issues and this will absolve either a State Government agency or the local council take over the ownership, care and control of that structure."

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/items/


Thursday, 24 November 2005

The South Australian Parliament has passed legislation overnight which will effectively save the 133-year-old Cape Jaffa lighthouse platform.

The bill to absolve any future owner of the structure from liability claims was introduced by south-east Liberal MP Mitch Williams.

The structure was marked for demolition by maritime authorities.

Labor and the Democrats supported the bill - Democrats' leader Sandra Kanck told Parliament she is pleased the platform will now be saved.

"I have to say I can't understand how the Australian Marine Safety Authority came to the conclusion that this platform is a danger to shipping," she said.

"It's in the middle of the Margaret Brock Reef where no ships would ever be. I congratulate the Honourable David Ridgeway for introducing this bill, I think it's a very sensible one."

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/items/

Extract from Hansard - Cape Jaffa Lighthouse Platform (Civil Liability) Bill

The Hon. R.J. McEWEN (Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries): I rise in support of this bill. It makes a lot of commonsense. Robert Mock has championed a large group of people in the South-East to come behind him in terms of finding a way for a body to take over care and control of this lighthouse platform, without inheriting potential liability. This bill simply says that, if a local government, or a body under its control, takes over care or control of the platform on Margaret Brock Reef, it will not be exposing its ratepayers to any liability. That platform ought to remain there. It is part of the history and heritage of the region, particularly of Margaret Brock Reef. The lighthouse itself is no longer on the top of the platform. It is now on land and is a tourism asset at Millicent [This should read Kingston SE]. The rest of the platform and the jetty ought to be left there. We believe that that can be done if this house supports this civil liabilities initiative by the member for MacKillop. I indicate my full support.

Robert Mock at Margaret Brock Reef Platform
Robert Mock at Margaret Brock Reef Platform
Robert Mock on top of the Margaret Brock Reef Platform, preparing to camp and stage a protest against its demolition, on 5 May 2003. 
Photo: Robert Mock

Robert is a generous and genuinely friendly person, who along with his family, showed LoA Inc members fantastic hospitality when a large contingent travelled to Kingston SE last December for a personal tour to see the platform. He is an astute lobbyist, and any future project he may put his mind to is likely to achieve successful results. LoA Inc congratulates him on his efforts, and advises that a glass of red and then a lie-down are now in order.

Previous Cape Jaffa Platform articles:

Email Kristie Eggleston

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