Cape Nature Call for Comment: Dassen Coastal Complex Management Plan



Subject: Dassen Coastal Complex


We wish to submit this letter on 11 January 2019 to confirm that our N.P.O. Friends of Blaauwberg Conservation Area (FoBCA) be formally registered as an Interested and Affected Parties (I&AP)

To register as an I&AP,

Friends of the Blaauwberg Conservation Area (FoBCA)

c\o Unit 2 Piazza Armerina

283 Blaauwberg Road



Primary contact: Roy Fuller-Gee

Cell:    0716719552



Heritage Western Cape

Our organisation is registered as a Conservation organisation and our area of interest includes the areas included within the Dassen Coastal Complex Management Plan




Western Cape, South Africa

Protected Area Management Plan 2019 – 2029

MOST RECENT UPDATE: 12 November 2018

We thank Cape Nature for compiling a very comprehensive draft document of 194 pages contain much information to be used as a base reference document, for which we are appreciative of receiving for review and comment.

Biodiversity content:

Very detailed and encompassing, we cannot comment further at this stage


Cultural and Historic Heritage

The collective set of cultural historic heritage features (shipwrecks, burial sites, historic structures, knowledge, activities, etc.) inherent to the Complex, are grouped into one focal value

called Cultural and Historic Heritage.


  • We find little substance in this draft document of any specific information on these aspects.

We have some input suggestions as follows:

Table 2.1 on page 35 of the draft management plan refers:

Under Focal Value 6: Cultural and Historic Heritage – Description, the following wording is suggested:  Wide range of tangible heritage resources from shipwrecks, coastal archaeological sites sometimes associated with burials, historical period farmsteads, cemeteries spanning several thousand years. Specific reference needs to be made to the Ganzekraal complex as it is the major cultural historical complex in this corridor with associated links to VOC outposts, trade relations between the Dutch and the Khoisan which has huge interpretative and heritage tourism opportunities.


Under Focal Value 6: Cultural and Historic Heritage – Nested values of note, the following wording is suggested: Intangible heritage resources such as traditional practices and knowledge systems relating to, for example, the environment and plant use; traditional access to environmental resources within the DCC. (also relevant to section 4.2.6 on page 115)


Under Focal Value 6: Cultural and Historic Heritage – Associated/Key human well-being value(s), this section is not clear and needs more explanation.


Under Focal Value 6: Cultural and Historic Heritage –Current Condition:  The condition suggested (GOOD) is questioned. From Table 4.7 (page 116) it might be deduced rather that the condition is FAIR as two of the three attributes fall into “FAIR” and not “GOOD”. Table 4.1 (page 100) provides the description for Fair which is considered a more realistic description than Good.

Please refer next bullet comment Slide 19


Table 2.3 on page 37 of the draft management plan refers:

Critical threats to Cultural and Historic Heritage should include destruction and neglect of heritage resources.


Goal 6 on page 41 of the draft management reads: “Goal 6. By 2029, heritage resources of cultural significance or other special value are valued and are benefiting visitors and local inhabitants.”

It is suggested to be reworded as follows: By 2029, cultural heritage resources to be identified, interpreted and sustainably enhanced for the benefit of visitors and local inhabitants.


Table 4.14 (page 132) The Ganzekraal homestead – which is of high cultural heritage significance and sensitivity is described as an area of “Development – High Intensity”

(“This may indicate an Area which is extensively degraded. To Provide low and/or higher density accommodation, and perhaps some visitor facilities such as shops and restaurants.”).

While there is absolutely an opportunity for commercial and accommodation activity around the old farmstead – which is in dire need of restoration and has been very badly neglected, please refer next bullet comment Slide 19.

It is also an area that needs specialised heritage management intervention.

  • Slide 19 of Power Point presentation: Focal Value 6: Cultural and Historic Heritage

The last bullet point:

  • Current Condition: Good

We assume this statement is a generalisation on the collective set of cultural historic heritage features.

Representatives and members of our organisation and many others have been concerned with the specific concern of Ganze Kraal Homestead for at least 20 years.

Since 2014, we have been active in representation to departments of the Western Cape Government to ensure that the structures and surrounding land would be actively managed by an appointed Conservation organisation. In 2015, Cape Nature was officially delegated this responsibility.

Unfortunately, the neglect has continued and active measures to conserve and protect have not been prioritised by Management of Cape Nature.

Meetings and constructive engagement with local manager, which included offers of materials and labour did NOT result in pro-active action and the vandalism and degradation of the remaining structures accelerated. This has been photographically logged and reported.

This has not been to the credit of Cape Nature.

Ganze Kraal Homestead

  • Current Condition: Very fragile and vulnerable
  • Page 28 and elsewhere refers: The Ganzekraal Conservation Area Protected Area Advisory Committee, in the process of establishment at the time of writing.

We specifically request to be actively involved in  Ganzekraal Conservation Area Protected Area Advisory Committee.

  • Specific Management Plans for Ganze Craal Nature Reserve with a specific action plan for conservation, protection and restoration of the surviving “School house, bakery and furrier” building.
  • Concept plan for Ganze Kraal Homestead and associated building structures. With input from Heritage Architects and Archaeologist specialised in this culturally sensitive field with knowledge in the Western Cape cultural heritage and early Cape vernacular buildings.


We appreciate this opportunity to comment and request that an acknowledgement of receipt be supplied by return email.

PLEASE NOTE: pdf version attached including signature of writer – “FoBCA Submission 11 Jan 2019.pdf


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