Idea for renaming takes further step

2017-03-14 06:03

A public participation process is on the cards to name steps in Kalk Bay after some of Kalk Bay’s early fishermen.

The City of Cape Town’s naming and nomination committee on Wednesday discussed a proposal for naming the steps on the corner of Quarterdeck and Kimberley roads in Kalk Bay after early settlers from the Philippines.

The suggestion is to call the currently unnamed steps the Manila Steps.

The committee then decided to undertake a public participation process.

The proposal was submitted by the Kalk Bay Historical Association.

Sailors from the Philippines first settled in Kalk Bay in the mid-1800s. Most of the settlers formed part of the fishing community (“Naming in honour of sailors”, People’s Post, 27 October 2015).

The steps below Boyes Drive, in the dip of the road below the waterfall, lead to a Filipino graveyard.

The burials at the site were discontinued when the Muizenberg cemetery was built at the end of the 1800s, but the graves are cared for by local residents who cleared away overgrown vegetation to display the tombstones, says the historical society’s Tony Trimmel.

The fishermen from the Philippines were commonly referred to as “Manilas” by the community, Trimmel says.

“There are still descendants of the fishermen, families with Spanish names, in the area,” Trimmel says.

This heritage can be seen in many areas in Kalk Bay, Trimmel says, with mass at the St James Church given in Spanish until 1921.

If the mayor approves the committee’s recommendation, the City’s public participation unit will start with the process of asking for residents’ comment, says naming committee chairperson Brett Herron.

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