BEN HOLLAND AND GEORGIA HOLMAN
A 1920s billiard saloon that was once home to a multiple world champion is one of many historic buildings to be showcased in a new heritage walk planned for suburban Bayswater.
The onetime billiard saloon tucked away on King William Street is now closed down but in the 1920s was home to four-time world amateur billiards champion Robert Marshall.
Marshall converted the saloon into a dry cleaning business after World War II.
The former saloon will be one of many stops on a heritage tour planned by the Bayswater Historical Society for the start of spring.
The walk will restyle heritage buildings to imitate their former purpose in the 1950s.
The walk aims to bring Bayswater locals and blow-ins together to celebrate the city’s golden age and generate community interest in local heritage.
Lynn Deering, Deputy Chair of community group Baysie Rollers, and a BHS member, said there was a need to reconnect people to history when bulldozing often trumped restoration.
“Today in Perth, large areas are being redeveloped,” she said.
“There is a big loss of old buildings and this wipes out all the history.”
Ms Deering said the tour will be led by a local artist and will visit retail heritage sites in Bayswater along Slade, Murray, and King William streets.
“We’ve got a local actor, Monica Main,” Ms Deering said.
“She’s going to help carry the story.
Ms Deering said the walk would bring old Bayswater to life.
“With the bakery, we might have the old baker’s cart …,” she said.
“At the butcher’s shop we’ll have the standard white shirt and striped aprons and those sorts of things.”
BHS Secretary Linda Bullow said most of the old butcheries and delicatessens that will be visited have been renovated to become part of modern houses.
City of Bayswater Central Ward Councillor Sally Palmer said it is important for projects like this to be run, not just in Bayswater but across Perth.
“This is relevant in an age of disappearing beautiful buildings within city areas,” she said.
“Preserving heritage is keeping communities together.”
Cr Palmer said many people were unaware of the historic value of their own homes.
“There is a need to inform people about the history that surrounds them,” she said.
Cr Palmer said she would like to see more legislation that protects heritage buildings.
“The City of Stirling has made it an issue by fighting the practice of demolition by neglect,” she said.
“People are neglecting buildings just so they can be demolished.
“I would like to see this issue raised here in Bayswater.”
Pictures by Ben Holland and Georgia Holman