Ken keen on South West saleyards, regardless of location

Zach RelphCountryman
Blackrock Angus stud co-principal Ken MacLeay, of Vasse.
Camera IconBlackrock Angus stud co-principal Ken MacLeay, of Vasse. Credit: Bob Garnant

A South West cattle buff says assuring a saleyard remains in the region is paramount, as uncertainty surrounds the existing Boyanup facility’s future.

Countryman revealed this month WA Agriculture Minister Alannah MacTiernan was considering plans to keep the 58-year-old Boyanup saleyards, slated to close in three years, operating until 2032.

The announcement came after the State Government did not unveil its preferred respondent to build a new livestock saleyard in the South West by last month’s deadline.

Despite the revelations, Blackrock Angus owner and director Ken MacLeay, who holds an annual bull sale at the Boyanup saleyard each February, was unfazed.

The Vasse-based cattle producer said it was important a saleyard remained operating in the region, regardless of where it was based.

“It is very important that the South West has a saleyard,” Mr MacLeay said.

“If it is a new one or upgrading the existing one ... what’s most important is that we have an operating saleyards.”

Blackrock Angus stud co-principal Ken MacLeay, of Vasse.
Camera IconBlackrock Angus stud co-principal Ken MacLeay, of Vasse. Credit: Bob Garnant

According to Ms MacTiernan, the Boyanup saleyards — located in the Shire of Capel — would be upgraded if the asset gets a 10-year lease extension and remains in use.

It is understood the State Government, Shire of Capel and WA Livestock Salemen’s Association are discussing who will fund the proposed upgrade.

The Boyanup saleyard is on crown land vested in the Shire of Capel and leased to the WALSA, a joint venture between Landmark and Elders, which operates the existing saleyard facilities.

The two private investors vying to establish a new saleyard in the South West are believed still to be in contention to develop a livestock selling facility, if the Boyanup upgrade does not eventuate.

This month, Shire of Capel president Michael Southwell said negotiations with WALSA and the State Government were progressing.

He said three parties were “close to an agreement”.

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