The Waenhuiskrantz Visserman Unie (Waenhuiskrantz Fishermen’s Union) manages the fishing village Kassiesbaai, which forms the core part of the Waenhuiskrans Cultural Landscape, a Grade I National Landscape.
Since 1937, the Union holds the title for the land occupied by Kassiesbaai. The Union is the owner of the land and allocates sites on which members may build houses. The Union is responsible for paying local taxes and services and recovers the costs from its members. The executive committee of the Union is elected every three years. The current chairman is Tony Murtz. Other members of the committee are: Rovina Europa, Adelaide Samery, Eveline Johannes, Daniel Daniels, Quinton Swart, Justin Swart, Vivian Lawrence, Colleen Murtz, and Eksteen Lawrence.
Photos by Shelley Christians.
The Fishermen’s Hall, built in 1938, has steadily deteriorated over the years. Damage to the walls by water and damp was extensive. The recent restoration of the Hall will enable the use of it in tandem with Fish House as a training centre, resource centre and a faculty that can be used to generate in-come.
Help our historic fishing village
Arniston / Waenhuiskrans has the only remaining historic fishing village in South Africa. Kassiesbaai has its inception in 1905. That year landowners wanted to relocate the fishing community, established in 1850, to make way for a holiday village. With the help of a lawyer from Caledon, the fishing community submitted a petition to the then governor general and after negotiations ensured their tenure. In the seventies and eighties of the previous century there were more attempts to relocate the fishing community, then under the former Group Areas Act. Once again the fishing community managed to confirm their residence and renovated and restored the historic village. The latest threat to the fishing community is the quota allocations of the past few years.
Kassiesbaai has long been declared a national monument. Under the new legislation Kassiesbaai forms part of a Grade I National Cultural Landscape. It is a national asset that should be preserved. It holds a piece of the country’s people and history alive. Without the possibility of adequate income from the sea, this asset can not be preserved.
The Fishermen’s Union has a plan to construct houses, in the traditional style, at the entrance of Kassiesbaai for rental to tourists. There is also a plan for a restaurant. The income from these developments will be used to preserve historic buildings in the town.
Tony Murtz – Chairman
Cell: (082) 625-5680 / (079) 523-3060
Donations to help the Fishermen’s Union to maintain and preserve the historic fishing village can be paid into:
- ABSA Bank
- Branch: Bredasdorp
- Cheque account number: 178 095 0001
Please inform Vivian Lourens (072 633 1894 | firstname.lastname@example.org) when you make a contribution.