Bushfire get-together

IT was a touching and fun evening for all at Riflebutts Reserve on Friday when Bushfire Recovery Margaret River hosted a get-together for the anniversary of the 2011 bushfires.

The event included art, food and live music, to commemorate one year since the fires that devastated the coast.

A commemorative steel sculpture by Simon James titled Rejuvenation was unveiled, and Olivia Bradbury, Paul Gravett and Matt Jordi replanted a Norfolk Island Pine between two 50-year-old pines that were burned in the fires.

The 47 Birdhouses art installation was on display in acknowledgement of the 47 buildings that were lost in the fires, and a further 106 damaged.  

Vivian Brockman-Webb performed a cleansing smoking ceremony with branches, and Augusta-Margaret River Shire Cr Ian Earl spoke of his memories of the fires. “It was a pretty hectic couple of days,” he said. “But it could have been a hell of a lot worse. It’s a slow process, recovery, you don’t just get over it.” 

He described, as a volunteer firefighter, having people shake his hand and kiss his cheek, and applaud and cheer the firefighters as they drove by.

SUPPORTIVE: Ann Marshall and Margaret Chadwick.

SUPPORTIVE: Ann Marshall and Margaret Chadwick.

COMMEMORATING:  Marian Hutton and Mitchella Hutchins. Below, John Bradbury and Brett Morrison.

COMMEMORATING:  Marian Hutton and Mitchella Hutchins. Below, John Bradbury and Brett Morrison.

MEMORIAL: People gathered at Riflebutts Reserve to commemorate one year since the Margaret River bush fires.

MEMORIAL: People gathered at Riflebutts Reserve to commemorate one year since the Margaret River bush fires.

NESTS:  Patrick Cronin with Zephyr Cronin, 2, and Ashah, 4, and Elise Prangnell, 8, Alex Prangnell, 10 and Aidan Prangnell, 12 at the 47 Birdhouses installation.

NESTS:  Patrick Cronin with Zephyr Cronin, 2, and Ashah, 4, and Elise Prangnell, 8, Alex Prangnell, 10 and Aidan Prangnell, 12 at the 47 Birdhouses installation.

FOR  COMMUNITY: Artist Simon James and Mark Heussenstamm with Simon’s work, Rejuvenation, looking over Riflebutts and Prevelly. Simon lost a house to fire in Osmington 20 years ago.

FOR  COMMUNITY: Artist Simon James and Mark Heussenstamm with Simon’s work, Rejuvenation, looking over Riflebutts and Prevelly. Simon lost a house to fire in Osmington 20 years ago.