Community Consultation Report
The City of Fremantle is the customer for the report on Samson
Recreation Centre. The consultant, Jenny Marslen has provided
a report identifying community needs for the centre.
Table of Contents
Appendix 1 9
Samson Recreation Centre is an indoor recreation centre with a multipurpose sports hall,
two meeting rooms, two tennis courts (floodlit) and crèche. The centre was built in 1988
to provide for the newly developed suburb of Samson and has extended services to the
wider Fremantle community. Surrounded by a bushland park, primary school, retirement
village and shops, the centre is part of the heart of Samson. The centre is owned by The
City of Fremantle and directed by the Community Services Department. “Previous
management philosophy of the Centre has been to develop and promote centre based
programmes including hire to user groups in order to maximise utilisation (time) of the
centre. Recognition has been given to community development needs when formulating
programmes “(Samson Recreation Centre Marketing Report 2003).
There has been no centre manager at The Samson Recreation Centre since November
2003 and it now operates on a key hire system directed from the City of Fremantle
Offices. The centres operation is divided into the following areas:
Marketing/Management. The Recreation Services Manager for the City of
Fremantle oversees the centre from Council Offices.
o Banking, maintenance, administration; 2 hours per week. Work is mainly
completed at the recreation centre, requires communication and contact
with council staff.
o Centre competitions; staff hours are dependant on the number of
competitions. Sports competitions still being run are indoor netball and
Centre bookings/hire. Centre bookings are taken at the City of Fremantle offices.
Users of the centre must pay and pick up keys at the council ‘s office in
Fremantle. Permanent users are able to hold keys.
At the February Precinct meeting the community voiced their dissatisfaction with the
decline in programming, especially junior programming and the new hire arrangements
for the centre. Many centre users and community members had also been concerned
that the centre was going to close down. The group requested the involvement of The
Meeting Place (City of Fremantle Community Centre) in the operation of the centre.
Consultation in the form of qualitative data collection was undertaken to assess
community information. A qualitative research was chosen so that people were able to
express their own needs. The questionnaire comprised of nine questions and a section
for comments. A summary of the questionnaire and recommendations are listed in the
Respondents stated that they like the convenience and location of the centre, that the
sports hall provides a venue for a multitude of sports (junior and senior) and is
considered a meeting place for the community. The staff are friendly and helpful and
facilities such as parking, floor, kitchen and lighting are important to people. Some
respondents like the lower cost of activities compared to the regional recreation centres
such as Melville and Leeming Recreation Centres. Responses and general observation
shows many people in the City of Fremantle do not have a connection to the centre and
have never been to the centre.
“Sporting activities” and “children’s activities” are the top general responses to the type of
programmes people wanted to see at the centre. Listed below are the eleven highest
specific responses that people wanted conducted at the centre:
Art and Craft (all ages)
Basketball - junior
Aerobics/Keep fit (a range of individual fitness classes were listed)
A diverse range of recreational programmes/ activities to develop lifestyle and health
were recorded and can be explored further. Refer Appendix 1.
New programmes/activities have been arranged using:
- The offers of assistance to teach/volunteer from the responses in the
- The list of activities from the questionnaire.
This information presented can be implemented or further developed by council staff.
59% of responses were from community members who were currently using the centre.
28% had never used the centre and 13% did not answer the question.
People were asked to list the age of their children as a guide to designing programmes.
Five top age groups were 5, 6, 11, 9 and 10 years of age. (Refer Appendix 1). This
demographic information can be further expanded from the 2001 Census compiled by the
Bureau of Statistics.
58% of responses were from people who had previously utilised the centre, 23% from
people who had never used the centre and 13% did not answer the question.
Suburbs with the highest responses were (in order)
White Gum Valley
The questionnaire shows that people are travelling from suburbs out of the five-kilometre
radius to attend the centre (refer Appendix 1).
Advertising through the local newspaper and the school newsletter were the two most
popular forms of promotion listed.
Community events such as festivals, community days, youth groups and Blue Light
Discos were just a number of activities the community would like to see develop over the
new few years. This could be an area where other council and community services are
linked in with the centre, i.e. The Children’s Fiesta, Festival of Fremantle, Community
Arts Project (eg. link the park, shops, centre and school together), Children’s Services
(eg. Buster the Fun Bus - Samson Park).
The comment section allowed people to express their views regarding the centre. A high
response of people are dissatisfied with the changes to centre hire (i.e. you are required
to book and pay at council to hire the local centre) and would like to see this procedure
revert back to centre based hire through a centre manager. Respondents want more
junior programmes and all centre programmes to be promoted. Respondents want the
centre to act as an information source for council services and to not increase its charges
so that equity remains. The lack of natural light was also a negative feature for one of
the current user groups.
Since the questionnaire has been distributed the centre staff have had enquiries
regarding programmes offered at the centre – people have been advised to attend the
Children’s Fiesta (April 2004) as the centre will be open for public viewing.
Buster the Fun Bus distributed questionnaires however most people did not fill them in
because they knew nothing about the centre, or believe the centre did not have
programmes to offer them. School staff from Beaconsfield and South Fremantle Primary
responded by saying many people did not return questionnaires, as they knew nothing
about the centre or felt disconnected from the centre. Questionnaires distributed at The
Children’s Fiesta were not returned.
One ratepayer strongly stated in a phone conversation that the centre is located in the
wrong place and Fremantle should have a wet/dry facility in a central location to suit all
ratepayers. At present there are two recreation facilities owned and operated by the
council – The Fremantle Leisure Centre (wet/dry) and The Samson Recreation Centre
(dry). Both facilities are situated close to the City of Fremantle boundaries.
The Strategic Marketing Plan for The City of Fremantle for Sport and Recreation
(January 2000 – December 2003) lists three goals:
To foster a greater and stronger social interaction of the community of
Fremantle through sport and recreation;
To strengthen and enhance sport and recreation in Fremantle as an integral
part of the community;
To offer high quality services and facilities at a low to median price.
The Samson Recreation Centre can be used to achieve the above goals.
1. A centre programme or brochure is necessary for promotion and awareness of
2. Listing in the Local Link under City of Fremantle services. The centre has not
been listed for 2004.
3. Inclusion in the Fremantle Council’s monthly newsletter as this will link the facility
to the ratepayers and community.
4. Regular updates in local school newsletters. A number of schools have stated
that they do not want to be used for advertising purposes. An action plan for
schools may be necessary to regain strong community links.
5. In-house advertising – encouraging current hire group participants to join new
programmes or enrol family and friends.
6. Increase the hours of an operation/duty manager. Discussion to occur whether
one person could co-ordinate competitions, after school care, complete
administration tasks (i.e. banking, enquiries, hire facility and call outs) and look
after assets i.e. equipment, facility.
7. Review the current centre hire procedures for the tennis courts and sports hall
and follow up on the ‘e pay’ system. This may relieve some customer
8. Further discussion on the involvement of The Meeting Place is required. This
may further extend programming options, establish community links and council
service links (i.e. cultural services, youth services, indigenous and festival
programmes) and be able to provide and achieve more suitable funding
Samson Recreation Marketing Strategy, 2002/2003.
Choo. P., Chio, K, Nguyen. N, Winnett,.H, 2000, Strategic Marketing Plan,
City of Fremantle, Sports and Recreation.
Methodology and results
The Questionnaire was distributed in the local newspaper to the Samson area – 805
1500 were delivered to local state schools and sent out with weekly newsletters. Weekly
reminders were put in newsletters. Schools involved:
White Gum Valley Primary
East Hamilton Hill
South Fremantle Primary
Winterfold Primary – declined
Other distribution included:
Buster the Fun Bus
Samson Recreation Centre users
The Children’s Fiesta 2004
Nine questions were asked to find out what people would like for the centre and the
community and to provide current basic demographic information. A section for other
comments was left at the end of the questionnaire for people to express concerns or
133 questionnaires were returned and the following results were obtained:
What do you like most about the centre?
Sports facilities and activities/programmes provided
Offers a local community meeting place, with a family orientation and is “ours”
Convenience and location and proximity to café, shops and school
Parking is safe and good
Never heard of or used the centre
Physical features – size, lighting, kitchen, floor and specific facilities (i.e. craft room,
Cost – cheap, well priced activities
Staff – friendly and helpful
What activities would you like to see conducted at the centre?
*Indicates the ten most popular responses
Sporting activities –
Netball*, Junior Basketball*, Volleyball*, Soccer*, Badminton*, Table Tennis, Tennis*
Indoor cricket, multisport*, junior badminton, junior netball, carpet bowls, martial arts,
tennis club including coaching for juniors/seniors and general hire, kindygym
Health & fitness –
Yoga*, Aerobics/Keep Fit*, Keep fit, Pilate’s, Prime Movers, Fitball, mothers exercise
group with crèche, meditation, circus skills, calanetics, belly dancing, dancing
Art and craft*, sewing
Music, Singing, modelling, theatre/drama group, Salsa, Square and Bush dancing,
Friendship club for 40+
Parental support groups, guest speakers, games afternoons, garage type sales
Youth Club, TAFE Courses, Vacation Care, Before School Care and After School Care,
meeting place for teens
Do you have any skills or know of any one with skills that would like to teach or volunteer
to teach at the centre?
A number of people have offered their skills and are being followed up to run courses.
Do you or your family currently use the centre?
Yes – 59%
No - 28%
Did not answer – 13%
If yes what activities do you do?
Badminton, soccer, After School Care, patchwork, prime movers, basketball training,
playgroup, tennis, karate, weight watchers, craft, netball.
If you have children please write their ages:
Listed in order from highest response to lowest response.
5 years, 6 years, 11 years, 9 years, 10 years, 7 years, 14 years, 3 years, 4 years, 8
years, 15 years, 1and under, 12 years, 13 years, 18 years, 16 years, 2 years and
Referring to the 2001 government census could also identify information regarding age.
Have you or your family previously used the centre?
Yes – 58%
No – 23%
Did not answer – 19%
If yes, what activity did they/you do?
Badminton, Netball, Tennis, Soccer, Basketball, Vacation Care, Yoga, creative dance,
Junior Netball, Prime Movers, After School Care, Patchwork, Precinct meeting, Hall Hire,
Tiny Tots Tennis
Where do you live?
Samson (19%), Kardinya (17%), Coolbellup (8.4%), Hamilton Hill (7.6%), White Gum
Valley (6%), South Fremantle (3.8%), Hilton (1.5%), Beaconsfield (1.5%), O’Connor
Other areas( 33.7%) – Willagee, Palmyra, Murdoch, Leeming, East Fremantle, Munster,
Bibra Lake, Spearwood, Coogee, St James, Willeton, Jandakot, St. James, Success,
South Perth, Ardross and Parkwood.
What type of advertising would you consider the best to inform the community of new
1. Newspaper/local Newspaper
2. School Newsletter
4. Mail out
Information Days, Website, Magpie Newsletter (Bill Massie – 9337 5115) and 98.5 FM
What type of activities/events would you like to see for the Samson Community over the
next three years?
Music Days at the Park, Circus Skills, Garage Sales, Open Day (involve all of community
including sports clubs, school, social clubs, PCYC), Youth Groups,
Guest Speakers, Blue Light Discos, and Free Family events, Community Fairs, Markets,
Access and Equity for use of centre, upgrade facilities for a function centre.
This section was to enable respondents to express any concerns or information.
Answers have been divided into the following areas for easier reading.
Consistent staff/centre manager to co-ordinate activities
Someone to answer phones/not machines/office manned/help with equipment
Local hall yet have to travel to Fremantle to pay (this was a common complaint)
Hire at hourly rate
Book on day if need to, not in advance, easier access to hire facility (i.e. tennis courts)
Disappointed when cancelled junior programmes when felt there was interest
Centre needs to be managed properly to be successful
Poorly run classes – classes cancelled
Hire one court if needed
Soccer fixtures available one week before
Select a board to run centre – not a committee
Facility - Physical
Great venue for children’s sports
Good facility – well run
Place is great
Fans or air conditioning
Clean the louvres
Lock on toilet door need fixing
Put soap/mirrors in the toilet
Cobwebs over gallery lights
Provide a larger indoor centre
Not modern – needs a refit
Rebuild in a central location
Better road signs
Never received information on facilities/activities for children or adults programmes
Advertise more in local paper (especially tennis courts)
Needs programmes for children
More information on programmes/facility and let local community know
Promote through a quarterly brochure
Left off City of Fremantle promotional brochures – monthly newsletter
Information to new people regarding council facilities/services
Link centre to other community groups i.e. school at discount charge
Keep fees down, especially for retired people