- Published on Thursday, 07 July 2005 08:00
A new leaf for Dwellingup
The Forest Heritage Centre, opened in 1995, is located in the leafy heart of the Dwellingup forest, approximately 100 kilometres south of Perth. The historic town of Dwellingup has been the centre of a thriving timber industry since 1910, and the surrounding area was a camping place for Nyoongar Aborigines long before that.
It is a unique nature-based attraction, combining a commercial fine wood gallery, a working school of wood, forest accommodation, an interpretive display area and a series of walktrails -- one of which takes you up into the canopy for a tree-top perspective of the jarrah forest.
The Forest Heritage Centre is designed to give visitors an awareness and understanding of all the social, community, aesthetic and economic benefits that come from Western Australia's forests. It offers an unsurpassed forestry tourism experience to all Western Australian's and visitors to our State.
In particular, it showcases WA's magnificent hardwoods and demonstrates the value-adding processes that capitalise on their rich grain and warm colours to produce high-value pieces.
Blending with the environment
Built of rammed earth in the shape of a giant jarrah bough, the Forest Heritage Centre's three leaf-shaped components each house an aspect of forest heritage.
The largest, central leaf is home to The Australian School of Fine Wood — a facility for demonstration and for training people in the art of fine wood products.
The Australian School of Fine Wood offers a range of courses for the public.
The smaller, western leaf is the Forest Heritage Gallery, where fine wood products and forest-inspired arts and crafts are exhibited. Most of these items are also availabe for purchase.
On the eastern side, the final leaf houses an interactive display area where visitors can learn about forest ecology and understand its diversity and management.
Winding through the forest are walktrails that reinforce the messages on display in the centre. Visitors are invited to explore the forest for themselves, along a 400-metre interpretive trail. The walktrail gives a rare insight into the complex forest ecosystem. Other walks offer seasonal information on plants and animals, as well as the industries that the forest supports.
How to Get There
The Forest Heritage Centre is a one-and-a-half hour drive south from Perth in the historic timber town of Dwellingup. It is close to attractions like the Lane Poole Reserve, with its popular camping areas such as the Nanga Bush Camp, the Hotham Valley Railway and the Marrinup Forest Tour, which features the historic Marrinup Prisoner-of-War Camp. There are two picnic areas (with BBQs) in the town and sevaral others beside the Murray River in the Lane Poole Reserve.
The Forest Heritage Centre is open from 10am to 5pm daily with an entry fee of $5.50 for adults, $4.40 for pensions and $2.20 for children (a family pass costs $11). Guided Tours are available to groups of 15 or more.
For further information phone (08) 9538 1395 or write to:
The Forest Heritage Centre
DWELLINGUP WESTERN AUSTRALIA 6213
Visit the Forest Heritage Centre's own Homepage (Opens in a new browser window.)
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