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Q&A with Mayor Tanya Taylor  

Not All Good News

Friends of the Haven met with Mayor Tanya Taylor and Council Officers Michael Cashin and Juliette Rosser on 19th October 2022.

Below are the questions which FoH sent to the Mayor prior to the meeting.

Her authorised written responses which she has kindly allowed us to share with the community are in green italics.

  • What are the current and future roles of WCC in managing/operating the Haven Amphitheatre?

WCC will continue to maintain The Haven space. Bookings from individuals/groups wanting to use this facility can be made via WCC website 

WCC will not consider rebuilding a stage in the near term (3-5 years) and WCC has no funding for rebuilding a stage.

  • What is the current and future status of the Haven Amphitheatre Committee (HAC) which successfully staged productions at The Haven with little financial input required by Council for nearly 40 years?

The HAC was disbanded at the end of the previous Council’s term and will not be reinstated.

Four new Advisory Committees with Willoughby community representation will be established. Any issues involving The Haven would be considered by the Community, Cultural and Heritage Committee.


  • What is the current role of the Castlecrag Progress Association (CPA) with respect to The Haven Amphitheatre?

WCC consults CPA and other interested community groups such as WBGS, WEPA and FOH regarding matters affecting The Haven.


  • Will WCC continue to subsidise productions in the current space or will financial support be required (eg. CPA has donated $1000 to a recent production)?We note that HAC used evening cabaret events with seated dining on the stage which were always sold out to generate funds that subsidised other Haven  productions. It is difficult to imagine how a financially viable production can be staged in the current Haven setting without substantial subsidies. 

Council currently subsidises productions at The Haven via a fee waiver for the use of the site.  This is not expected to change in the immediate future.

WCC accepts grant applications from Not-For-Profit organisations or registered Charities via their online application website.

  • For current productions at The Haven, who is responsible for

    • Insurance and Public Liability (for audience and for performers).

    • Provision of toilet facilities.

    • Provision of electricity and associated safety standards.

    • Provision of shuttle bus to/from The Haven.

The hirer is responsible. (Download Terms and Conditions on Hiring website)

Electricity is available on the site.

Michael Cashin noted that he is contacting Community Services to enquire if they could provide minivan transport to/from The Haven at a reduced price.


  • What validity does WCC attribute to its commissioned Micromax report that the majority (9/10) of Council invited community groups supported rebuilding the stage?

The previous Council commissioned this report. The Micromax report was considered as one part of many sources of information relating to The Haven. 

The stage was subsequently re-instated as a landscaped solution.

  • If WCC does not intend to rebuild a stage within the next 3 years, what advice would you give FOH whose main objective was to rebuild/replace the stage?

The Mayor’s advice is that The Haven should be used in its ‘Landscape Solution’.

The reasoning for this:

The DA for the current stage lapses on 30 March 2023.

The current DA is not agreeable to FOH and other stakeholders and would need to be resubmitted if alternative designs are sought.

The project requires 50% external funding & there is no inclusion for this in the current budget.

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