1. Wasn't this park called Dalmatia Park until now?
It has been locally known as such, however it was never formally approved. The name is also deemed unsuitable by Landgate as it is too similar to Dalmatinac Park in pronunciation as well as location.
2. Why Aboriginal/ Nyungar names?
Nyungar names are particularly encouraged by Landgate.
Under Section 4 of the Policies & Standards for Geographical Naming in WA, it states:
4: Recognition and Use of Indigenous Names
The GNC is committed to the promotion, preservation and restoration of Indigenous culture within Western Australia. This is acknowledged by a preference being given to Indigenous names where possible.
The use of Indigenous names is encouraged and the collection and compilation of recorded Indigenous topographic names is supported.
It is also worth noting that Council’s 2013-2016 Reconciliation Action Plan seeks to encourage the use of Aboriginal names for Cockburn sites and reserves. It specifically states:
12 SIGNAGE AND NAMING:
12.1 Create a list of appropriate Nyungar names to be used in naming Cockburn sites, roads and trails.
12.2 Encourage dual language on public signs, such as park signs, welcoming signs etc. where possible, plus historical descriptions of the land use.
12.3 Encourage the use of Aboriginal names for buildings/parks.
3. Why not use names of local pioneers?
The parkland was previously owned by George Weston Foods, which produced meat smallgoods. The Watsonia Factory was established by William and Eliza Watson in 1893 and has been associated with the Watson family until recently.
The City has recognised the Watson family in the form of Watson's Oval nearby, as well as the Woodlands Park which is seen as an interpretive site for explaining the history of the Watsonia Factory.