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Published June 5th 2018
Take a break from suburbia and enjoy the serenity
Situated off Almondbury Road in Ardross, Wireless Hill Park has long been a local favourite and one of the jewels in the crown of the City of Melville.
The main attraction of the reserve is that it provides an area for bushwalking and enjoying an abundant display of wildflowers - especially in Spring, within the heart of suburbia. There are three main walking tracks and a map is available to download from here.
There is also a historical significance to the site. Initially used for communication purposes by the Noongar Beeliar Aboriginal people, in 1912 it became the Applecross Wireless Station and was in use until 1968. The Wireless Station served an important role during the two World Wars by providing a means of communication with offshore ships. The old engine room of the station now houses a museum.
In recent years there has been some redevelopment of the reserve and this has meant that now instead of there being three 'towers' to climb, there is only one. Not to worry – this still provides a great view across the river to Perth city.
The redevelopment has also produced a wonderful War Memorial which is illuminated at night. The memorial features large metal panels which have silhouettes cut out of them and are also printed with photos from various conflicts. It is a moving and poignant reminder of Western Australia's involvement in armed conflict around the world.
The War Memorial is a striking addition to the park.
Perhaps one of the most disappointing aspects of the park is the redevelopment of the children's playground. Whilst I can see what the council was trying to achieve here a more nature-themed play space - this sadly falls short of the mark.
Given the huge space available, the playground is very small and lacking in equipment which most children enjoy, such as slides and traditional swings. Having visited many playgrounds around the country, I feel that this park would have benefited from incorporating elements of nature play with traditional playground equipment, or by providing more nature play structures, such as opportunities for climbing, perhaps a creek bed - which children love or some stepping stones, as smaller children will find jumping from log to log a bit challenging.
There are some great elements here, the speaking tubes for instance, hark back to the site's communication past. But there is not enough here to keep most children engaged for very long. Not to worry though, the park itself is still great - with walking tracks, the tower to climb, perhaps a picnic to be enjoyed and of course, time outside away from screens!
There is a huge amount of beautifully maintained shady grassed area at the park as well as barbeques and picnic tables. It provides a perfect spot for a small family gathering.
Next time you are at Garden City or in the area generally, do make time to check out this charming local park.