Saturday, July 22, 2006

BCA Forum and Heritage Pics 

Today I went to Blind Citizens WA's 2006 forum. The Midland trains didn't run due to track work, so I caught a replacement bendy bus from Perth station. Just as I wondered if I needed to press the bell for the bus to stop at Maylands, it pulled up right outside the venue - the Senses Foundation building on Whatley Crescent, opposite the railway. How's that for service?

BCWA currently have an office in the building, which once housed the Royal WA Institute for the Blind and the cane and brush factories that employed blind people. The factories closed a few years ago and I met a woman today who worked here for 24 years. The property has now been sold. The facade is heritage listed and will remain, while the inside is likely to be demolished for apartments. Here's a pic from the corner.

Front of Senses Foundation in Maylands

I've heard the buildings kindly described as rambling - a rabbit warren. The toilet block, which is clean and neat, is outdoors from the main front building. From outside between buildings, I looked up at the walkways attached to the second storeys.

Under walkway, through railings and up at roof.

Walkway with trellised sides and neatly painted guttering.

The gutters at the base of the main building are deep and I wonder if there have always been guard rails to prevent people falling in?

White metal guard rails surround gutters

Despite the institutional walls, there's a warm glow from the resource room, where a woman is washing cups and saucers at the sink.

Two windows in red brick building.

Nooks and crannies surprise me. Stacks of blue plastic chairs stand behind the wire fence protecting this nook.

Chairs behind wire fence in wall, with fire extinguisher.

From the car park the building looms large over people chatting out the front.

The front entrance stands wide and tall over figures below the steps

Thanks for that. I've passed that building hundreds of times but never seen any of the inside.
Hi Rodney, I'm glad I filled in some blanks for you. I've only visited parts of the property and I'd like to ramble about some more, or read more about its history.
So, it is now 25/7 8 pm, where have you been. I am in chat, pop in if you can.
Hi XXXX, I've been around and about. :-) I'll be in chat tomorrow (Wednesday) night. Tim's planning on coming too and I think I'll bring some vino. Look forward to catching up then! I think I saw you in my stats tonight, looking at this entry - but I had no way to contact you and I only just received the comment in my e-mail. D'oh. Too roo for now.
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