Planet Freo

This is Planet Freo, an aggregation of numerous blogs' and other websites' news feeds, all relating to Fremantle in some way. If you would like to have your site included here (anything about Fremantle is appropriate), or see a list of websites whose feeds would probably be included here if they had them, please see

To subscribe to Planet Freo, use this URL:, and for a simple list of the feeds included, see here.

Enquires may be addressed to


Published 26 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.


Monument Hill


I try to not let my faithful Freo’s View readers suffer while I am out pounding the City Ward streets door knocking and dropping flyers in letterboxes, so I took this lovely photo of an artist up at Monument Hill this morning, who was painting the Freo scenery.

Roel Loopers




Published 24 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.


The number of interstate visitors to Perth is down, but international visitors’ numbers have increased, and the good news for Fremantle is that most people who visit do not travel far but stay in the metro area.

The main complaint is how expensive food, coffee and drinks are, and that is a concern. Backpackers even find our supermarkets expensive, they tell me when I am on volunteer tour guide duty at the Roundhouse.

The very good news is that just about everyone who visits loves Fremantle, and that brings up the question on how we can increase the tourism experience and get people to stay longer in the port city, and spend more time and money here.

If you don’t like history the Shipwreck and Maritime museums are not your cup of tea, and neither are Fremantle Prison and Roundhouse, so what else can people do in good old Freo? A tour about Whadjuk Noongar history along Bathers Beach with Greg Nannup will be different, but how many visitors do know the tours are available?

Sun baking on one of our beaches is also not everyone’s favourite, and going to Rotto is very expensive, and we’d like visitors to stay in Freo of course.

Unlike the east coast we don’t have theme parks, but for Adventure World, and that is a long way out of Freo, and we don’t have a Darling Harbour or Federation Square either.

We need some real creative and innovative thinking on how we can improve the Freo experience, and I have come up with two thought bubbles that might start some thinking about it in the business community and at Fremantle Council.

The first one is rather simple. Make the planned new playground at Kings Square a dual attraction by giving it an Aboriginal theme. Great for the kids, but it would also become a tourist attraction.

The second one would require a lot of planning, and even more money. Instead of a children’s Nature Play ground create one above and in the ocean at Bathers Bay over the summer period. Not just a floating platform to jump from, but climbing stuff, water sprays, fun for young and old that embraces our great climate and fun Freo lifestyle. Add BBQs, tables and chairs, shade structures in front of J Shed and make it THE destination for family fun in WA.

There should be no problem with charging an entry fee to cover all or part of the cost, and the sale of fish&chips would go through the roof, so the Fishing Boat Harbour traders might like to invest in it.

We need to learn to think big(ger)!

Roel Loopers


Secrets of our Cities visits Freo.

Published 24 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

I am looking forward to Greig Pickhaver aka HG Nelson’s new series coming to SBS, Secrets of our Cities which has an episode dedicated to Freo. Once again Freo showing that we live in a city with more stories (and secrets) and interest than almost anywhere else in the country. Here is the blurb: In the 3 […]


Published 23 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.



The long weekend makes for a short week, so here a reminder that there are three election forums on next week.

On Tuesday the 26th of September North Fremantle and South Fremantle candidates can be grilled by the public, so take advantage of it.

There are only two candidates in North Freo and the meeting is at the Community Hall there at 6.30 pm.

Five candidates battle for South Fremantle, including indigenous man Ben Moodie and the youngest candidate 21-year-old Liam Carter. It’s on at The Local at 6.30 pm on the 26th.

It’s a shame the two forums are on the same day as I would have liked to attend both of them.

On Thursday the 28th at 6.30 City Ward candidates, including me, will be part of a Q&A upstairs at the National Hotel.

This will be a interesting debate, with Claudia Green claiming the high-ground in the belief that only she had the God-given right to nominate. She discredits the other four candidates Roel Loopers, Julie Morgan, Adin Lang and Linda Wayman, by claiming they are just “a disingenuous attempt to dilute votes.” It’s actually called democracy!

And a reminder that the big Mayoral Forum will be on October 3 at 6.30 at Tannock Hall of the University of Notre Dame.


Roel Loopers




Published 23 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.



The annual Fremantle Arts Centre Print Award exhibition is on and it is outstanding, so don’t miss it!

In my opinion it is one of the most excellent print award shows we have had for years.

Winner of the City of Fremantle $ 16,000 first prize was the huge four-metre print Keeping the Bastards Honest by Evan Pank of New South Wales.

The $ 6,000 second prize was awarded to Valerie Sparks of Victoria for her moody Prospero’s Island SouthWest.

Judges were Rebecca Beardmore of NSW,  FAC curator Andre Lipscombe and Franchesca Cubillo of the ACT.


Roel Loopers


At last! Improvements to the Hilton Town Centre

Published 23 Sep 2017 by sam in Sam's Freo Report.

At long last we can begin work on improving pedestrian safety and the street-scape in the Hilton Town Centre!

Councillors and staff met with Main Roads (who control South St) about five years ago and discussed a range of options and how we might co-fund them. Then everything stalled and we never heard from them again.

In September 2016 councillors met our new Director of Technical Services on the site at about 4pm on a weekday afternoon to show him just how dangerous the environment is for pedestrians. Nine cars sailed through a red light at the pedestrian crossing in the space of twenty minutes! He was left shaking his head in disbelief.

In another twist, last year Main Roads turned off the facility for vehicles trying to exit Paget and Victor Streets. You might know that cars queued at these intersections for a sufficiently long time would trigger a synchronised red light at South/Carrington and the pedestrian crossing, creating a gap in the traffic to allow people on these side streets to access South St.

This facility was introduced after extensive negotiation with Main Roads a few years ago, so we were shocked to discover they had just turned this off without even telling the City of Fremantle, let alone consulting with us.

read more


Published 23 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.



Reader Kel Smith is all up in arms that I photographed the wrong tree on the Esplanade and that I called him a worrier, so here the tree he is concerned about.

Relax, Kel! I did not go out in the storm and rain on Friday to deliberately shoot the wrong tree or ridicule you, I simply got it wrong, because unlike everyone else in Fremantle I am not perfect!

I too am a Freo worrier, and so are all those who care for our city, so no offence meant there either.

Now let me go back contemplating mountains and mole hills. ; >)


Roel Loopers



Published 22 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.


The weather at the start of school holidays and the long weekend is not great, so maybe Fremantle parents can have a creative and productive session with their children on what kind of playground they would like to see at Kings Square, as part of the new retail development and Civic Centre.

The City of Fremantle is asking kids–and their mums and dads– what they would like to be included in the new outdoor play space at Kings Square.

The ideas of 170 local students have included musical stepping stones, a tree-top dance floor, giant flying foxes, a crystal cave, mushroom swings, giant fidget spinners and surprise pools that spray water ‘every now and then’.

These and more ideas are now on display at the Fremantle Library until October 24.

Other thoughts and suggestions can be shared on the City of Fremantle’s My Say Freo online portal.


Published 22 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.



Fremantle worrier Kel Smith is concerned about the big tree at the Esplanade and the huge branch that runs across Marine Terrace. He is worried it might break off and kill someone.

Near the public toilets and Vasco da Gama monument the City of Fremantle planted more new trees yesterday.

Driving along Marine Terrace on Thursday night I was surprised how dark the area is and wondered if there could be a string of small lights from tree to tree to lighten up the street and park and make it look more attractive and festive.

It would also make the Esplanade feel a bit safer for pedestrians.


Roel Loopers


Films for the weekend

Published 22 Sep 2017 by Fremantle City Library in Fremantle City Library.

Feel like watching something different this weekend? Here are a few films just added to our collection. Get your library card ready and get some popcorn ready! You’ll find them all at

Most Graceful Girl

Guts, stamina, dedication, power. You’ll need all four to be crowned ‘Most Graceful Girl’. In the beautiful, physically demanding world of the uniquely Australian dance sport of Calisthenics, there is only one solo prize that matters: Most Graceful Girl. Watch now

Gaza Surf Club

Gaza – a strip of land with a population of 1.7 million citizens, wedged between Israel and Egypt and isolated from the outside world. Hardly anything gets into Gaza and even less gets out. But against this background there is a small movement. Our protagonists are part of the surf community of Gaza City. Round about 40 surfboards have been brought into the country over the past decades with great effort and despite strict sanctions. It is those boards that give them an opportunity to experience a small slice of freedom – between the coastal reminder of a depressing reality and the Israeli-controlled three mile border. Watch now

Becoming Bond

A unique documentary/narrative hybrid chronicling the stranger-than-fiction true story of George Lazenby, a poor Australian car mechanic who, through an unbelievable set of circumstances, landed the role of James Bond in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969), despite having never acted a day in his life. Then after being offered the next six Bond films and a $1 million signing bonus, he turned it all down… Watch now

Pauline Hanson Please Explain!

PAULINE HANSON: Please Explain! charts the rise of the fiesty fish monger from Ipswich who went on to become one of the most divisive politicians in Australian history. Now, two decades after her incendiary maiden speech claiming Australia was being “swamped by Asians” Hanson is back as a Queensland Senator alongside three One Nation colleagues. Not much has changed, though she now has a new target in her sights claiming Australia is being “swamped by Muslims”. Watch now

Time to Choose

TIME TO CHOOSE leaves audiences understanding not only what is wrong, but what can to be done to fix this global threat. Through interviews with world-renowned entrepreneurs, innovators, thought leaders and brave individuals living on the front lines of climate change, the film takes an in-depth look at the remarkable people working to save our planet. Watch now

Filed under: Online Tagged: beamafilm, film, streaming films


Published 22 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.


festival parade


There will be no Festival Parade at this year’s Fremantle Festival, because of lack of public interest. Instead there will be a shopping kart race to support St Patrick’s at Kings Square on the last Sunday of the festival.

The Fremantle Festival appears to be moving away from the traditional community festival to a more sophisticated and classy, fully curated, festival, but the risk is that it will leave sections of the community behind.

More ticketed events mean that people on low incomes miss out, as is already the case with the Perth International Arts Festival, that has become unaffordable to many.

I am not at all certain that a small city like Fremantle should move away from a community festival and try to compete with the capital city of WA.

We should embrace the difference and Freo’s uniqueness, instead of wanting to do the same as other festival cities do.

Roel Loopers



Published 22 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.


The Town of Mosman Park council has expressed in principle support for a change in boundaries for the secession of the entire North Fremantle area from Fremantle.

The Minister for Local Government rejected the call of North Freo residents who wanted to merge with Mosman Park, but apparently there are now even more residents who want to move to the northern neighbours.


Roel Loopers


Published 22 Sep 2017 by freoview in Freo's View.


After three years of procrastination since the eviction of the Fly by Night musicians club from the Fremantle Drillhall, Sunset Events has announced that they secured a liquor license for the 800 patron  Freo Social Hall venue.

I noticed last Friday when I had a meeting at Fremantle Prison, that there were a lot of tradesmen around the hall, so hopefully it will open sometime next year.

Roel Loopers



Parade cancelled

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

FREMANTLE council has dropped the parade from this year’s Fremantle Festival.

It will instead be replaced with a charity shopping cart race around Kings Square which will help fill St Pat’s shelves with donated food.

Fremantle mayor Brad Pettitt said dropping the parade had met with a mixed response from councillors given it was an “institution”, but he’d personally learned to trust that the council’s festival crew knew what it was up to.

“We were getting to the point there were more people in the parade than there were watching it,” Dr Pettitt told the Herald.

He said there didn’t seem to be the same community engagement with the event these days, while schools had indicated it took a lot of resources every year and they would be happier with a biennial event.

“So we’re trying something a bit different, and the shopping trolley race will be a kind of a way to say farewell to Kings Square as it is,” Dr Pettitt said.

The Great Fremantle Race, as the trolleyathon will be known, will see racing teams wearing bright matching costumes and squeaky-wheeling their way around an obstacle course.

The carts will be filled with groceries which will later be donated to St Pat’s.

Mayoral contender Ra Stewart says she was initially shocked to hear of the cancellation, but says after reflecting on residents’ disengagement with the city’s CBD, she wasn’t surprised.

“I would also say that my observations are that there have been less people drawn into the city to watch that parade, which used to be a really significant event.”

She says that’s a further indication that the current council is marching the city backwards, saying she’s seen figures suggesting Mandurah recently overtook Fremantle as Perth’s second-most visited city.


The ‘beautiful’ game

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

Keeping the bastards honest—a huge print capturing the tribal chaos of a football riot—has won first prize at this year’s Fremantle Arts Centre Print Award.

It’s Australia’s richest and most prestigious printmaking award and Evan Pank, an emerging artist from Sydney, pocketed a cool $16,000 for winning.

The almost four-metre long print will now become part of the City of Fremantle Art Collection.

Pank’s work explores the influence of sport and fan culture in Australian society and politics, and it was the first time he had tried his luck at the Fremantle Print Award.

• Evan Pank’s Keeping the Bastards Honest. Photo supplied

“I entered because I really wanted to reach a new audience,” he says.

“I was ecstatic just to be named a finalist, so it definitely hasn’t sunk in yet that I actually won.”

There were 301 submissions from around Australia, whittled down to 56 by judges Rebecca Beardmore (NSW), André Lipscombe (WA) and Franchesca Cubillo (ACT).

The 2017 awards have seen a move away from digital and back to old-school print making.

“With evidence of hand processing…ink and a real engagement with the physicality of print making,” award coordinator Emma Buswell says of his piece.

• Valerie Sparks’ Prospero’s Island South West. Photo supplied

Second prize ($6000) was taken out by Melbourne artist Valerie Sparks for Prospero’s Island South West, a moody and dark seascape.

WA artists Nathan Beard and Andrew McDonald were highly commended by the judges.

The prints can be seen at the Fremantle Arts Centre on Finnerty Street.


Walls protected

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

COCKBURN council is poised to offer some heritage protection to the stone walls dotted around old South Coogee.

Last Thursday the council adopted a study that found the dry stone walls have some significance because of their links to the wave of post-war European migration that brought Croatian and Italian market gardeners to the area.

And while the walls are common over east, where they’re automatically given protection if they’re older in 1940, over here there a bit of an oddity.

“The Dry Wall Association of Australia does not recognise any such walls in Western Australia,” the report noted.

• Lucy Radich wanted this stone wall in Munster protected because it was built by her parent Jakov and Jakubina Vidovich, who moved to Perth from Split in Croatia in 1939. Photo by Steve Grant

South Coogee (now Munster and Beeliar) were particularly ripe for the walls as the fields were full of stones which the new farmers needed to clear anyway.

An aerial photo of the suburb taken in 1953 didn’t reveal many stone walls, while by 1963 they were fairly common.

The wall-love was prompted by a push from Lucy Radich, who wanted a fourth wall on West Churchill Munster recognised because it had been built by her father Jakov Vidovich. The council added that wall to its local government inventory in 2014.

The report found three old walls in Britannia Ave and Jervois Street, Beeliar, and Albion Avenue in Munster, while there was also stone ruins spotted on Coogee Road.

It was recommended they get the lowest heritage protection, meaning they would have to be photographed and researched before being demolished.

The study results are to be put out for consultation.


No ‘Aubrey cabal’

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

FIRST up, Cameron Schuster isn’t planning to sell off bits of Shirley Strickland Oval, as we had him doing last week when we confused sporting fields.

The Melville councillor, who’s recontesting his Mt Pleasant-Applecross ward in the October elections, is happy to see the Mt Pleasant Bowling Club grounds sold off to pay for upgrades at Shirley Strickland, though.

Second, he voted against the Wave Park proposal at Tompkins Park on the basis he didn’t think it was in the right place.

Which kind of makes it strange that the Alfred Cove Action Group is backing Steve Keppert to run against him, but Cr Schuster says the activists are just trying to portray him as part of an “Aubrey cabal”.

He says that’s an unfair portrayal, as there’s been 713 decisions made by the council since his election and 70 per cent have been unanimous: “That would make it a cabal of 13, then,” he says.

• Cameron Schuster

He’s broken it down even further, to show that of the remaining 200-odd contested decisions, he has been opposed to mayor Russell Aubrey.

Cr Schuster says despite his opposition to the wave park’s location, when it became obvious the numbers were against him, he and colleague Matthew Woodall spent many hours ensuring the lease contract benefited the council as much as possible.

“We spent considerable time going through the lease and making sure there were bonds, conditions and a sunset clause – that was due to me.”

Cr Schuster said that was to protect the council from ending up with a white elephant on its hands should the wave park not prove as financially viable as first thought.

He says he’s also fighting to stay on council to ensure residents in the transition zone of the Canning Bridge structure plan get a better deal.

He’s trying to push through amendments that would allow people to build single-storey homes in the zone, after helping a couple who got stuck with a property they couldn’t sell and advice from the council they weren’t able to build a modest home instead.

He also wants to oversee the introduction of the three-bin system across the whole city, having been a key architect of the trial.

He says it will improve recycling and composting rates, and will be cheaper in the long run because the SMRC will be able to switch off its turning composters.

Cr Schuster also wants to be involved in the development of the lower Heathcote lands, saying boundary issues with the South of Perth yacht club had been resolved.


Marching to a new beat

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

SUNSET EVENTS has secured a tavern licence for the old Drill Hall on Parry Street and is ready to get cracking on its new venture, says director David Chitty.

This week Sunset and the National Trust revealed that Freo’s newest live music venue will be called Freo Social Hall and feature local beers, wines and curated food trucks. It will have a capacity of 800 patrons.

The main hall is currently still floorless after archaeological digs and repair work, and Mr Chitty says it’s still too early to say exactly when fit-out work would start or finish given the vagaries of the building process, but he’s looking forward to creating a family-friendly hub of music and local food.

“Freo has such a great vibe and we know that locals love their live music and good food and drinks,” Mr Chitty said.

• Freo Social Hall director David Chitty, Fremantle mayor Brad Pettitt and National Trust manager Kelly Rippingale ham it up on a makeshift stage at the old Drill Hall. Photo by Steve Grant

“That’s what the Freo Social Hall is all about—bringing the community together in a space that has always been a social hub for the city.

“We are working closely with the National Trust to pay homage to the beautiful building by maintaining its heritage features, while activating new spaces to expand the offering and create a truly unique space.”

Local promoters and community groups will also be able to book the space.

National Trust asset manager Kelly Rippingale said the site was well known for its social significance.

“The drill hall has long been a place of social interaction—from hosting social evenings in 1898 to housing Australia’s first badminton club in 1900 and being home to some iconic concerts in the 80s and 90s.”

Fremantle mayor Brad Pettitt said it was nice to be able to say life was coming back to the building, which follows the Fly by Night’s unhappy departure almost three years ago.


McGurk: ban Aldi grog

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

FREMANTLE Labor MP Simone McGurk has urged the local council to reject an application from supermarket giant Aldi to sell grog from its South Fremantle store.

The company is already in hot water with the McGowan government because of its plans to sell wine bottles for just $2.78, with health minister Roger Cook considering a minimum price because of fears cheap liquor will fuel the rate of alcoholism.

Ms McGurk says as the state minister responsible for child protection and curbing domestic violence, she was confronted daily with the damaging effects of alcohol abuse.

“The most frequent complaint I get as a local MP is about public drunkenness and anti-social behaviour in Fremantle and surrounding areas,” Ms McGurk said.

Alcohol abuse

“There is an established relationship between easy access to discount liquor and the exacerbation of problems associated with alcohol abuse.

“Rejection of this application is an opportunity for council to send a message that it will do what it can to reduce the extent of anti-social behaviour by limiting the number of outlets selling cut-price liquor.”

Aldi says it will stick strictly to it licence conditions.

“As a responsible and experienced retailer, Aldi observes all regulations for the purchase of alcohol,” it said in a response to the Herald.

“Unlike other supermarkets, ALDI does not have a large format liquor store and does not carry any chilled alcohol products for immediate consumption.

“In ALDI stores where liquor is sold, the range is confined to a delineated area, which is separate from everyday grocery lines.”

40 is the new 50

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

WRAY AVENUE stalwarts Galati and Sons has welcomed a new 40 kmh speed limit along the bustling precinct.

After 16 months of lobbying, Fremantle council was recently given the green light by Main Roads to reduce the speed limit along the avenue.

Part-owner of the grocers, Salvatore Galati, said they thought carefully about the proposal before giving their blessing.

“We have to have careful consideration for what goes on Wray Avenue to help boost what is here, and I think the speed humps and 40 kmh limit is a good start to this,” Mr Galati said.

• Fremantle mayor Brad Pettitt celebrates the 40 kmh win on Wray Avenue with local grocers Salvatore and Santo Galati and butcher Frank Carbone. Photo by Steve Grant

Mayor Brad Pettitt says Wray Ave is an “iconic neighbourhood centre” but quite narrow, and with buses barrelling up there and shoppers pulling out, the council wanted to make sure it was safe.”

Three Harbours replay

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

FREMANTLE councillor Andrew Sullivan wants the McGowan government to kickstart the northern half of the mothballed Three Harbours plan.

Cr Sullivan, who’s re-contesting South ward at the looming elections, says the plan would provide a great economic boost for the city centre.

The department of planning and infrastructure floated Three Harbours nine years ago, proposing to extend groynes from South Beach to Bathers Beach 1.8 kilometres into the sea to accommodate hotels, accommodation and boat pens and stackers.

It was widely condemned locally, but Cr Sullivan and fellow architect Richard Longley came up with alternatives which even garnered qualified support from the Fremantle Society.

Cr Sullivan says if re-elected he’ll also be looking to focus on the South Quay, Fremantle Oval/Hospital and the Knutsford/Swanbourne precincts.

“These type of projects are my bread and butter and I still have a lot to contribute to these projects,” he told the Herald.

He says the council also needs to deal with the difficulties it has finding resources to complete strategic projects.

“It was greatly disappointing to me that local government reform failed once again as I genuinely believe Fremantle needs a significantly bigger rate base than we have.”


The games begin

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

HEALTH minister Roger Cook has confirmed Fremantle council will take the lead with local Labor MP Simone McGurk on a study of Fremantle Hospital land that could be redeveloped.

Mr Cook toured Fremantle Oval with mayor Brad Pettitt and CEO Phil St John this week to hear how the council wants to redevelop the area to reconnect it with the city’s CBD and make it the go-to sports venue it once was.

“The benefits of the project can only be fully realised if the government moves to unlock state-owned land in the area, so it’s great to have the minister here to show him around and explain what a unique opportunity this is to work in partnership on future plans for the oval precinct and Fremantle Hospital,” Dr Pettitt said.

Dr Pettitt says there’s a couple of options available for the oval, and despite additional costs he’d like to see the playing surface moved back towards Victoria Pavilion.

That could free up land at the rear, which adjoins the daggy end of the hospital, which is currently cut off with unsightly coils of barbed wire.

• Fremantle council CEO Phil St John and mayor Brad Pettitt discuss oval/hospital options with health minister Roger Cook. Photo by Steve

Public connections

Dr Pettitt says with improved public connections, some of the land could be used for commercial, residential and parking.

Mr Cook said he’d already had some internal discussions with the department about using land sales to speed up the redevelopment of the hospital, but says Ms McGurk’s in the driving seat.

“This is an exciting opportunity and this is the brain child of Simone, who said ‘why don’t we give the hospital a new leases of life,” Mr Cook told the Herald.

He says the costs of running a revamped hospital will be run through the government’s “sustainable health review”.

Mr Cook’s congenial amble around the site could also be seen as another example of one of this council election’s oddest plays; Labor’s love-in for Greens mayor Brad Pettitt.

The good doctor has already had housing minister Peter Tinley’s glowing appraisal at one of his campaign events, former federal Labor MP Melissa Parke added her moniker to his election material this week (material that’s endorsed by former Labor police minister Bob Kucera’s son Tim, who also happens to be the son-in-law of former Fremantle Labor MP and left faction powerbroker Jim McGinty) and Cr Hannah Fitzhardinge, an active Labor member, has been an almost constant presence at his shoulder during the campaign.

It’s got all the feeling of a courting ritual—and this in a city where the two parties have supposedly been at war since Adele Carles broke Labor’s hold over the state seat in 2009.

But Dr Pettitt says he hasn’t been approached about jumping ship, and a Labor insider told the Herald the unusual alliance was more about locking his rival Ra Stewart out of the race.

That’s got Ms Stewart spitting chips; she says she’s being unfairly painted as a right-winger when she’s got no affiliation to the Liberal party other than meeting with small business ministers when they were in power and she headed Freo’s chamber of commerce.

“I am not going to comment on the support I receive from anyone in particular, but I find it extraordinary they would be doing that when they have not engaged with me at all to find out what my opinions are on any issues,” Ms Stewart says.

What also makes the Pettitt/Labor alliance all the more quirky is that Ms Stewart’s biggest supporter is former Fremantle mayor Peter Tagliaferri; Labor’s candidate that lost Fremantle to Ms Carles.

He’s fuming over his party’s backing of Dr Pettitt.

Fremantle Society president John Dowson has also been noticing Labor’s renewed interest in Freo council and he says it’s not good for Fremantle.

“It’s scared off some good people; some society members were thinking of running, but they got scared off saying what’s the use against this massive machine,” Mr Dowson said.


Still in the dark

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Your Herald in Fremantle Herald Interactive.

HERE’S a little update on a story the Chook ran almost two years ago about Hamilton Hill resident Jason Sheffield and his perplexingly high power bills (“In the dark,” Herald, November 7, 2015).

The disability pensioner suddenly started getting bimonthly power bills from Synergy that regularly topped $500, even though he lives alone with a couple of cats and only runs a handful of relatively new appliances in a one-room unit.

He was so worried about making ends meet he stopped turning lights on and took to scrambling around his unit with a torch, while sparkies brought in to investigate scratched their heads and told him something was definitely fishy.

• Jason Sheffield’s just as perplexed now his electricity bills have plummeted. Photo by Steve Grant

Mr Sheffield even contacted police, concerned a neighbour was tapping into his power supply to run a clandestine hydro set-up.

Then a couple of months ago, his bills started to plummet unexpectedly.

Mr Sheffield says he didn’t update any appliances or change anything else about his life, but now he’s supposedly using a quarter of the energy he was last year.

Relieved, but convinced his two years of financial pain were unfair, he contacted the energy supplier again, and reckons the best response they could manage was to say he should be happy with his lower bills.


Working together on Freo Oval plan

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

The State Government and the City of Fremantle are working together to progress plans for the redevelopment of the Fremantle Oval precinct. Deputy Premier and Health Minister Roger Cook and I discussed the redevelopment plans during an inspection of the oval on Wednesday. The Freo2029 Transformational Moves strategy and the Port Cities Priorities campaign we […]

(21/9/2017) Working together on Freo Oval plan

Published 21 Sep 2017 by timw in News & Media.

The State Government and the City of Fremantle are working together to progress plans for the redevelopment of the Fremantle Oval precinct.

Deputy Premier and Health Minister Roger Cook and Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt discussed the redevelopment plans during an inspection of the oval on Wednesday.

5 days ago in Media release , Major projects
(21/9/2017) Working together on Freo Oval plan

“Fremantle is about as far from Fountain Lakes as it gets…”

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

Fremantle is about as far from Fountain Lakes — the fictional, whitebread suburb in Kath and Kim — as it gets. Artsy and eclectic, culturally rich and rimmed by beaches, it’s a modern-day utopia for comedian Peter Rowsthorn, who played Brett Craig in the hit series. He’s called “Freo” home for the past four years, […]

Clarification on financial health

Published 21 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

There have been some assertions thrown around about the City of Fremantle’s financial health in recent weeks so good to have this clarification and update from the Minister and the City of Fremantle’s external and independent auditor (see bel0w). I would also add that out ten year budget (that shows that the City of Fremantle […]

When Fremantle had a REAL Heart

Published 20 Sep 2017 by admin in The Fremantle Society.

Photographic Negative – Glass

Smoke and Mirrors

For the last two years the Fremantle Society has been warning the community that the important ratepayer assets of the city have been flogged off, at often hugely discounted rates, to developers. The relentless sale of car parks alone has been jaw dropping:

Queensgate Car Park SOLD

Spicer Site Car Park SOLD

Point Street Car Park SOLD

Pakenham Street Car Park SOLD

Phillimore Street Weighbridge Car Park SOLD

And, to be sold: Fremantle Leisure Centre Car Park.

Fremantle ratepayer property assets were worth $60 million when Dr Pettitt first became mayor in 2009.

They are now worth $20 million.

Backing up Fremantle Society concerns of poor financial management, Fremantle Council was recently rated by the State Government as the worst performing metropolitan council .

Today, Fremantle Council issued a press release ‘clarifying’ that the Local Government Minister has stated: ‘the Minister said he accepted information from the City’s auditors that, subject to final audit, the City of Fremantle’s 2016/17 FHI score will restore to approximately 85.’

But, why is the Minister relying on the council auditors instead of asking the people in Treasury who wrote the original report?

Political Interference in Local Elections?

Is this yet another example of political interference in local government elections?

People are sick and tired, not only of the mayor parachuting people into positions on council, but of political party machinery meddling in local ward elections and the mayoralty.

Depot another Dumb Deal?

The Fremantle Society wants to see ratepayers get good value from their assets, and has been unimpressed with the financial acumen shown by the mayor and councillors, time after time after time.

Let’s look at the recent expensive purchase by council of a new depot site at 2 Jones Street, O’Connor.

Council said it wanted to move its depot, and gave $7.8 million to Crossgold Pty Ltd for the 1.88 hectare site in 2014, a company who had purchased it for $1.9 million less than 9 years earlier. The price council paid represents a 295% profit for the seller at a time of stalled property prices.

Over three years have passed by, and council has not moved its depot. So, what is the real cost, when rates, water, insurance, consultants and interest are added? Interest alone would be over $700,000.

The Fremantle Society wants to know:

a) Is it true that the site is now worth considerably less than what was paid for it?

b) Is it true that a report will be brought to council about the depot, but not till after the local government elections?

c) Is it true that the site is a contaminated site?

Sensational Photo!

We leave you today with an utterly sensational photograph of the heart of Fremantle c1906, kindly provided to us by Fremantle Ports from the Battye Library collection, seen here at the top of this message.

The image shows Fremantle when it had a real beating heart of successful and diverse commerce, fancy shops, well dressed people, a light rail system threaded through the middle of the town, and a human scale unmolested by the greedy incongruity of what the current council is allowing to be built.

Note the tram on its way to Beaconsfield, and the well dressed children hanging off the Town Hall verandah post. (That verandah should have been reinstated when council restored the building recently. They paid $10,000 for a set of plans to reinstate the verandahs, but they still haven’t been put back).

Yes, there is a proliferation of untidy poles and wires, and blatantly excessive advertising in parts, but this is one of the truly great images of early Fremantle that hasn’t been circulated widely before.

Council’s current plans to reinvigorate the heart of Fremantle are being done without regard to heritage issues, and that is the tragedy.


(i) Please volunteer and donate. The council elections will be over very soon and community candidates need support.

(ii) Fremantle Society AGM: We are delighted to announce that the indestructible legend Vyonne Geneve, who still runs our associate society the Art Deco Society, has agreed to speak at our December AGM about Art Deco, and the book she and her husband recently published Picture Palaces of the West.

(iii) Ann Frank Exhibition: This important exhibition needs volunteers to help run it at the Woolstores.

John Dowson
The Fremantle Society

The post When Fremantle had a REAL Heart appeared first on The Fremantle Society.

City Ward Candidate Forum

Published 20 Sep 2017 by Freospace in Arts Centre Freospace.

The Arts Centre precinct lies within City Ward. 

Five people have nominated for the single vacancy in City Ward and you may have already met them or received election material.  It is good to know that there is so much interest in representing our ward.

The five candidates are:

View candidate profiles

Before you vote, you will have the opportunity to meet the candidates, hear their views and ask them questions at a City Ward candidate forum on 

Thursday September 28th from 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM 

The venue is the upstairs bar NATIONAL Hotel on the corner of High and Market St.

(20/9/2017) New era for Old Boys School

Published 20 Sep 2017 by timw in News & Media.

The restoration of Fremantle’s historic Old Boys School will be celebrated at an official opening tomorrow night.

The heritage-listed building on Adelaide Street has been given a new lease of life following $2 million worth of renovations by the City of Fremantle.

Local arts and health organisation DADAA, the Fremantle Foundation, CircusWA and PianoEasy now call the 163-year-old building home.

6 days ago in Media release , Major projects , Arts & culture
(20/9/2017) New era for Old Boys School

(20/9/2017) Clarification on financial health

Published 19 Sep 2017 by timw in News & Media.

The City of Fremantle has received clarification from the Minister for Local Government over the City’s risk profile.

The City wrote to the Minister, David Templeman, in August after it was identified as being “high risk” in a response to a question in State Parliament.

The City’s risk profile was based on reporting from the 2015/16 financial year, where it recorded an unusually low Financial Health Indicator (FHI) score due to a change in accounting methodology.

6 days ago in Media release
(20/9/2017) Clarification on financial health

(19/9/2017) The people on the bus are happy CATs

Published 19 Sep 2017 by timw in News & Media.

An annual survey of public transport passengers has revealed people are very happy with Fremantle’s CAT bus services.

The Transperth Passenger Satisfaction Monitor for 2017 shows Fremantle’s Central Area Transit buses received a 98 per cent overall satisfaction rating.

1 week ago in Community , Media release
(19/9/2017) The people on the bus are happy CATs

(18/9/2017 )Meet your 2017 council candidates

Published 18 Sep 2017 by jasonc in News & Media.

Nominations for candidates have now closed for the upcoming 2017 Fremantle Council elections.

Elections will take place on 21 October 2017.

To find out more about the election process go to Local government elections

For a list of candidates and their profiles go to Meet your 2017 council candidates

1 week ago in Community , Council
(18/9/2017 )Meet your 2017 council candidates

Fremantle Studies Day

Published 17 Sep 2017 by fhs6160 in Fremantle History Society.

Fremantle Studies Day Sunday 22 October Fremantle Army Museum Theatre Burt St, Fremantle

The 2017 Fremantle Studies Day focuses on cultural institutions which have given Fremantle its reputation as a centre for the arts in Western Australia. From the earliest days when providing a broad education for the working class man was seen as a vital endeavor of a community through to the encouragement and support of professional and amateur writers, musicians and artists, Fremantle continues to produce a dynamic and lively creative community. Join us to learn more about the institutions which have made significant contributions to our rich heritage.


Cultural organisations in late 19th Century Fremantle- Prof. Bob Reece

Fremantle Arts Centre: Contemporary Programming in a Historical site – Sheridan Coleman

Four decades of Fremantle Press – Jane Fraser

The amateurs of Perth – Fremantle Symphony Orchestra – Natasha Meston

Afternoon tea will be served to provide an opportunity for fellowship and discussion. Copies of the recently launched Fremantle Studies Vol 9 (members $15, non- members $20) will be on sale.

Registrations open at 1pm for a 1.30pm start Members: $20
Non members: $25

RSVP essential: by Thursday 19 October 2017
Photographs courtesy of Fremantle City Library History Society – Image Numbers : LH004978, LH005030, LH002513, LH000812



Cultural organisations in late 19th Century Fremantle, Bob Reece


Apart from the ex-convict-owned and managed Herald newspaper (1867-1886), the two main cultural organisations in Fremantle in the second half of the nineteenth century were the Mechanics’ Institute (1851) and the Working Man’s Association (1868), which came together in 1870 to form the Literary Institute. Established by philanthropic city fathers to ‘uplift’ the working classes through self-education, they offered ‘improving’ literary entertainments as well as library facilities and lectures on scientific and literary subjects. Over time, however, they were riven by class differences, becoming more like gentlemen’s reading clubs and the nucleus of Fremantle’s city library.


The first Literary Institute, in Cliff St, before 1899, photo courtesy of the Fremantle History Centre

Bob Reece is Professor Emeritus in History at Murdoch University where he lectured from 1978 until 2010, apart from three years as Keith Cameron Professor of Australian History at University College Dublin. Widely published in Aboriginal history and Irish convicts in Australia, he has also written extensively on the history of Sarawak (Malaysia).

Fremantle Arts Centre: Contemporary Programming in a Historical Site

Sheridan Coleman

The talk will give a portrait of the way in which FAC as an organisation has infused the complex and rich history of the site, and the building itself, with its substantial and varied arts program. This will include a history of the work of the Arts Centre as a cultural and community hub since 1974, and will include several examples of programs which have sought to bring contemporary artistic voices to bear on the nature of the space itself. The talk will also mount a discussion on the challenges of maintaining and restoring a heritage-listed building (original restoration) and the way that the ‘shadow’ of the building enriches the cultural programs that take place therein. Though the story of the lunatic asylum is well known, FAC’s forty-three year history as a place for families, art, learning and community has become as iconic and important a part of the building’s character and role in the local and wider community.


Sheridan Coleman is a practising artist and freelance arts writer from Perth, W.A. She recently graduated from a PhD course in fine art supported by APA and CUPSA at Curtin University. Her practice is dedicated to the study of landscape art traditions and their future in a world which is largely materially known, constantly photographed and has been translated (almost) in full into interactive, online, satellite-photographed maps.

Four decades of Fremantle Press

Jane Fraser

Dorothy Hewett, Randolph Stow, Elizabeth Jolley, Gail Jones, Brenda Walker, Craig Silvey, Robert Drewe, Joan London, John Kinsella, Liz Byrski, Philippa Nikulinsky, Kate McCaffrey, Norman Jorgensen, Tim Winton, Alan Carter, Dave Warner – think of almost any well-known Western Australian author and you’ll find that Fremantle Press has published them at some point in their careers – and usually at the very beginning when they were completely unknown and had only their talent to make them attractive publishing prospects. Fremantle Press was established more than 40 years ago to serve the Western Australian community by publishing the stories from this state. This will be an intimate and inspiring behind-the-scenes look at a working publishing house.


Jane Fraser is CEO and sales and rights manager at Fremantle Press. She began her career in educational publishing in Sydney. She has worked as an international co-editions publisher, in tertiary publishing, corporate marketing and communications and as a non-fiction publisher.

The City of Fremantle Symphony Orchestra: A History

Natasha Milosevic Meston

Since 1993, the historic Fremantle Town Hall has served as the primary venue for Perth’s most long-established community ensemble: The City of Fremantle Symphony Orchestra. The FSO brings classical music performance home to Fremantle and has proven itself to be a vital contributor to its artistic and cultural landscape, boasting an annual program of four concerts in addition to auxiliary performances held in conjunction with seasonal events. For its audience, the FSO is a way for locals to support their friends and family, or recognise and enjoy the musical talent of their community. For its regular membership of approximately sixty musicians, this ensemble means a chance to play and perform the often strenuous but always enjoyable works of musical geniuses alongside the commitments of fulltime work and family demands. In short, the FSO provides a chance for socialisation, connection, and support between diverse members of the community, and is particularly dedicated to the promotion and enjoyment of classical music as part of the cultural community landscape of Perth. This paper addresses the orchestra’s attempts to achieve their many aims, and outlines the long history and significant impact of the ensemble.

Natasha Milosevic Meston

Natasha Milosevic Meston completed her undergraduate degree in History at the University of Western Australia in 2016. Her honours thesis, completed under Dr Chantal Bourgault du Coudray, is due to be published in History Australia in 2018 and concerns the fields of gender, biography and war. She currently works within the Royal West Australian Historical Society and as a commissioned historian.

A wheelie safe city

Published 15 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

  The City of Fremantle’s Community Safety Team now has pedal power following the introduction of bike patrols. The new bikes – purchased from a local Fremantle bike shop – will be used to patrol streets and parks from 7:00am-5:00pm, focussing on the city centre and South Beach. Community Safety Team Leader Chris Scanlan said […]

(15/9/2017) - A wheelie safe city

Published 14 Sep 2017 by timw in News & Media.

The City of Fremantle’s Community Safety Team now has pedal power following the introduction of bike patrols.

The new bikes – purchased from a local Fremantle bike shop – will be used to patrol streets and parks from 7:00am-5:00pm, focussing on the city centre and South Beach.

Community Safety Team Leader Chris Scanlan said Fremantle was the first local government in WA to introduce bike patrols.

“With the bikes we can cover a much greater area and respond a lot quicker than we could on foot,” Mr Scanlan said.

1 week ago in Community , Media release
(15/9/2017) - A wheelie safe city

This Election Should be About Quality

Published 14 Sep 2017 by admin in The Fremantle Society.

The two pictures here are indicative of the problems the community faces when developers not only push the boundaries as to what is allowed to be built, but then inflict on their communities a quality of architecture that is utterly inappropriate, unloveable, and NOT the ‘heritage of the future,’ Dr Pettitt keeps promising us.

The first photograph here is from Bayswater, showing plans from the Fremantle based Yolk Property Group for something that has locals seething. The second image is from the Yolk website showing the new 4 storey building they have inflicted on the West End, described by one long term resident as ‘the worst building in the West End.’

This election should be about getting not only value for money (our council property assets have crashed from $60 million to $20 million under Dr Pettitt) but BETTER QUALITY.

The Fremantle Society has repeatedly asked for a proper review of the Design Advisory Committee of Fremantle Council, which costs $1,000 an hour in fees to run. The Chairman is still Professor Geoffrey London, who was nominated for the committee by the mayor 8 years ago, and who, at the very first meeting of the committee, rejoiced at plans revealed for 18 storeys on the Coles Woolstore site opposite the railway station. The committee, and mayor and council, have failed to prevent poor quality developments in Fremantle, damaging to the value of Fremantle as a special place.

Nominations Have Closed

Nominations for council elections closed at 4pm today.

Some candidates have been scared off by the juggernaut of Labor politics and its influence in these local elections, and by the hostile social media campaigns attacking anyone as being negative who dares question Fremantle Council.

For the mayoral position, only Ra Stewart has put her hand up to take on the incumbent Dr Pettitt. The mayor Dr Pettitt, on his nomination form, states that he delivers ‘sound financial governance’ when the reality is that the government website MyCouncil rated Fremantle as having the WORST financial management of any metropolitan council. A score of 70 represents sound financial health. Fremantle Council is rated a 42. By comparison, our neighbours, Melville, have a rating of 98.

The alarm bells should be ringing. The community cannot afford another four years of this.

Dr Pettitt also says there has been ‘better community consultation’, whereas the latest community satisfaction survey shows in the How the Community is Consulted section, that satisfaction has DROPPED since the last survey. 31% think consultation is excellent or good, but 41% think it is terrible or poor.

Given that Dr Pettitt has received around $1 million of ratepayers’ money since elected, he should tell the truth about the actual results so far after 8 years as mayor, and deliver what he keeps promising.

For North Ward, high rise advocate Michele Corbo will run against incumbent Doug Thompson.

In South Ward, Greens candidate Liam Carter will run against incumbent ‘ex Green’ candidate Cr Sullivan, who advertises himself as a ‘recognised leader’ and a ‘heritage expert’. No comment needed. Jennifer Suffling, Maria Vujcic, and Ben Moodie round off an interesting group.

For Hilton, Catherine Hammond is standing against incumbent Socialist Cr Wainright.

In Beaconsfield, Fedele Camarda will run against the Labor Party’s Hannah Fitzhardinge.

In East Ward, Michelle Cunningham will run against Jenny Archibald.

In City Ward, Roel Loopers, Adin Lang, Claudia Green, Lynda Wayman, and Julie Morgan will contest that seat.

What Happened in 2009?

An interesting book entitled To the Beach lies on the shelf of New Editions. It posits that the North Port Quay issue of 2009 was a defining issue that shaped politics in Fremantle since.

It is not often that a whole book is devoted to one local Fremantle issue. One reviewer wrote:

Ever since Rats in the Ranks we have known that local politics can be fascinating. Thor Kerr provides a heady analysis of the volatile swirl of sentiment, advertising, politics, activism and sheer opportunism that determined the outcome of a key development in Fremantle in 2009. Kerr has a keen eye for capturing public personalities with a telling detail, and brings the tools of cultural analysis to bear on media stories, images, policy documents and popular discourses. Both as a Fremantle local and a cultural theorist I learned a lot about the mechanics and machinations by which conflicts of development, environmentalism, heritage and local politics played out on this particular ground – and indeed continue to reverberate through the city. PROFESSOR SUVENDRINI PERERA, CURTIN UNIVERSITY

Mayoral Debate

The Fremantle Society has for a long time been a co-sponsor of political debates in Fremantle.

Cr Pemberton and the Chamber of Commerce, also co-sponsors, tried to get rid of the Fremantle Society this time, by having us excluded.

But, we are back, at the insistence of the university, and would like to invite you all to the next mayoral debate at Tannock Hall (University of Notre Dame), Cliff Street, on Tuesday 3rd October at 6pm. More details later.

Public Art – What are we Getting?

The Fremantle Society is keen to see high quality urban art to to ensure high quality streetscapes. This is the letter we wrote this week to the Director of Planning:

to: The Director of Planning Mr Paul Garbett

Dear Paul,

The Fremantle Society keen to see high quality public art and high quality restoration projects, but is concerned with the effectiveness of the Percent for Art Program.

The intention of the program was to provide money for heritage or public art. Developers have to spend 1% of the value of their project either on public art or heritage works.

This is an opportunity to make a positive contribution to the public realm with art that is loved and appreciated and which enhances the urban streetscape on a permanent basis, or heritage improvements that add to the authenticity of Fremantle.

It would appear that what the public have received so far has in most cases been very poor quality art installations, often affixed to the property of the developer.


a) The Fremantle Society wrote to council about the unattractive sheets of blue plastic on the Quest apartments at 8 Pakenham Street and were told that council was satisfied that those few sheets constituted the developers requirement for $140,000 worth of public art.

The developer was also required to produce an archeological report. The Fremantle Society has read the detailed and excellent report, but is dismayed to see that such an important site, where the largest private house in the State once stood, is not interpreted in any meaningful way for residents or tourists. Council should have insisted that the archaeological report form part of the brief for interpretive work carried out and then monitor the outcomes of the program.

b) 50 Pakenham Street: This dismal four storey development has a metal disc stuck on the side of the building which appears to represent the required percent for art.

c) Atwell Arcade Project: The Fremantle Society asks what was the percent for art requirement for this project? There are a series of metal poles recently installed in the High Street Mall which many people find offensive, intrusive, and interfering with views of the Town Hall and High Street. Do those poles constitute the required public art from Silverleaf?

d) The King’s Square project is a $270 million project, meaning that $2.7 million needs to be spent on public art of heritage. Can we have details of what is proposed there please?

e) The LIV apartment complex currently being built in Queen Victoria Street is a $61 million project, meaning that $610,000 is required to be spent on art or heritage, a sizeable sum.

We ask (i) What works are projected to be created with that $610,000? (ii) Can we please have a copy of the archaeological study done for that important historic site?



John Dowson
The Fremantle Society
0409 22 36 22

The post This Election Should be About Quality appeared first on The Fremantle Society.

(14/9/2017) Free city centre parking to support local businesses

Published 14 Sep 2017 by lawrenceb in News & Media.

Visitors to Fremantle will soon be able to park for free for up to an hour in selected locations around Kings Square.

The City of Fremantle will trial free one hour on-street (kerbside) parking at locations in Paddy Troy Mall, William Street, Queen Street and High Street (east) to support local traders during the $270m renewal of Fremantle’s Kings Square.

1 week ago in Media release
(14/9/2017) Free city centre parking to support local businesses

Freo tourist numbers set to double with Kings Square FOMO festival precinct

Published 14 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

This is a BIG retail announcement for Freo. Fear Of Missing Out indeed! Freo tourist numbers set to double with Kings Square FOMO festival precinct Helen Shield, Commercial Property Editor Thursday, 14 September 2017 11:48AM The FOMO space will incorporate the redevelopment of the former Myer and Queensgate buildings and carpark.Picture: Supplied Kings Square Fremantle will […]

Chamber News

Published 14 Sep 2017 by Fremantle Chamber in Chamber CEO Blog – A few words by Olwyn Williams.

Tuesday 12 September was a pretty significant day for Fremantle. Not just Fremantle neighbourhoods but Fremantle state-wise and Fremantle internationally.

The Port, Logistics and all that

More than just a City, Fremantle, through the Port, is a key economic resource and vital to the supply chain for our State. I was pleased to be at the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA) Tuesdays event that hosted the State Government announcement of the Westport Strategy.

I know logistics aren’t at the top of your average family breakfast discussion, but it is essential to almost every part of your life. It is about your car, your home, your job, your clothes, your flat pack furniture, your food – all being able to get to you for the lowest price possible. For many of the Chamber’s members it is also about our getting our exports to market in a competitive environment and being able to run a viable business.

The headlines and actions of Roe 8 and Perth Freightlink are history but our logistics environment desperately still needs a whole lot of work. The Westport Strategy, headed by Nicole Lockwood, is targeting a 50-100 year approach, formed from 5 key plan – the Port, Transport, Land-use, Environmental, Staging and Finance – drawing on multiple government agencies and external stakeholders.

That Westport starts with big picture logistics thinking is the right way. For the Fremantle centric –within all of this will be the High Street connection to the Port, and the increased connection of Victoria/South Quay to the Fremantle CBD.

The Chamber is looking forward to being a contributor to the long term focus but also to ensure that we have the right level of attention focused to our economic and tourism development in the short and medium term.


The Minister for Tourism, Paul Papalia MLA, has announced some red tape reduction for accredited tour operators.

As of Wednesday 13th September accredited tourism businesses will be able to provide self-serve beer and wine as part of a dining experience whilst touring an attraction. Now the BBQ lunch or under the stars dinner offered as part of a tour package can be served with beer and wine. For many visitors to WA it was perplexing as to why they could not be offered wine or beer with their on-tour meal. This is a great opportunity for tourism product development for the whole state.

There are still regulatory requirements for tourism operators, in terms of responsible service of alcohol, no sale of alcohol, prior permission from and landlord/property owner, and accreditation through the Australian Tourism Accreditation Program run by the Tourism Council of WA


The City of Fremantle had already committed to creating a revised local law banning single use plastic bags. The revision was focused on the standards in place for other States and Territories. Now Fremantle is not alone, with the State Government stepping up to introduce a ban on single use plastics bags across the State.

The great thing for Fremantle is that a shared implementation is whole lot easier and the effort to create change is much different.

There are many local retailers that have proudly not used plastic bags or use degradable. For retailers that do offer, it doesn’t mean you can’t use plastic bags; it is just that there are standards that need to be met in terms of material weight, type etc. Stay tuned for the detail

There are many consumers that are already practised in the art of remembering to have shopping bags at one’s beck and call. I don’t count myself in that group yet. You get to Carnegie Hall by practising and if you are like me, we have until 1 July 2018 to get used to it.

Local Government Election Forums

Over many years, the Chamber has provided its support for the delivery of election forums for Federal, State and Local Government elections and 2017 is no different. We offer and partner to deliver forums so the business and residential community can hear from candidates together.

A couple of Wards have their dates established, with a firm eye on not recreating the wheel, and we are including those dates.

Last month we also published our platform on what we want to know from candidates about their position on Fremantle’s economic development – for a refresher click here.

Nominations for candidates for Local Government close on Thursday, 14 September. All candidates are welcome to participate and will receive an email inviting them to participate. Please understand that if there is only one candidate nominated, there is no election and therefore no need for a forum.

Details of the dates and times of Forums will be maintained on our website.


Olwyn Williams

Chief Executive Officer


Free city centre parking to support local businesses

Published 13 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

Visitors to Fremantle will soon be able to park for free for up to an hour in selected locations around Kings Square. The City of Fremantle will trial free one hour on-street (kerbside) parking at locations in Paddy Troy Mall, William Street, Queen Street and High Street (east) to support local traders during the $270m […]

On The Road

Published 13 Sep 2017 by jonstrachan in Jon Strachan.

Five of WA’s Distinguished Gentlemen left the Maritime Museum today on a bike ride to Sydney, where they will join the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride.

They sported a variety of bikes, 2 Bonneville’s, a BMW, a Suzuki and an old Panther.  Fremantle’s Mayor, Brad Pettitt wished them well and officially sent them off, a little late as one had a puncher on his way to the Maritime Museum.  Good to get that over early!

There was also a large contingent of support bikes who were going to ride with them to Mundairing.

The event aims to raise money for men’s health issues, including suicide prevention and prostate cancer.  You can follow their progress and donate via their facebook site /2017ontheroad

Have a great trip guys and watch out for those wombats!

Congratulations to Yolk – Winners at 2017 UDIA Awards for Excellence

Published 13 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

Lives in Archives workshop

Published 12 Sep 2017 by fhs6160 in Fremantle History Society.

Notre Dame University and SROWA (State Records Office) are running a workshop Lives in Archives: using archives at the State Records Office of Western Australia.

The workshop provides those interested in all disciplines that study the past – history, archaeology, family history, Aboriginal history, State politics – with essential skills on critiquing written documents and advice on discovering and using the huge collection of historical data at the SROWA.
Sessions are on 16 October – Notre Dame University and 23 October at SROWA.
Cost $200
Limited to 15 people
for further information or to register your interest contact Dr Shane Burke at UNDA on 

Secretary of the Fremantle History Society
Anne Brake

Slow down on Wray Ave

Published 12 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

The speed limit through the busy Wray Avenue shopping precinct around Galati’s is set to be reduced to 40 kilometres per hour. Acting on feedback from local residents and businesses, the City of Fremantle applied to Main Roads for the speed reduction more than a year ago. Combined with the traffic calming devices installed in […]

(12/9/2017) Slow down on Wray Ave

Published 12 Sep 2017 by lawrenceb in News & Media.

The speed limit through the busy Wray Avenue shopping precinct is set to be reduced to 40 kilometres per hour.

Acting on feedback from local residents and businesses, the City of Fremantle applied to Main Roads for the speed reduction more than a year ago.

Combined with the traffic calming devices installed in 2015, the reduced speed limit will help to improve safety and amenity along the popular shopping and café strip.

Fremantle mayor Brad Pettitt said the new 40km/h limit will apply between South Terrace and Carnac Street from Monday 18 September.

2 weeks ago in Media release
(12/9/2017) Slow down on Wray Ave

(12/9/2017) Fremantle welcomes bag ban

Published 11 Sep 2017 by lawrenceb in News & Media.

The City of Fremantle has welcomed the announcement that plastic shopping bags will be banned in Western Australia from next year.

The WA government announced this morning that lightweight, single-use plastic shopping bags will be banned from 1 July 2018.

Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said the announcement was a win for the people of Fremantle, who have been pushing for a ban on plastic bags for more than five years.

2 weeks ago in Media release , Sustainability
(12/9/2017) Fremantle welcomes bag ban

McGowan announces state-wide ban on plastic bags

Published 11 Sep 2017 by Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog in City of Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt's Blog.

I am pleased to hear Mark McGowan has announced WA will ban single-use plastic bags from July 1 2018. The Premier made the announcement on ABC radio on this morning. South Australia, Tasmania, the Northern Territory and ACT have already moved to ban plastic bags so good to see WA will follow. Well done to […]

Defence Budget Isn’t Supporting Local Jobs

Published 11 Sep 2017 by Kath - Josh Wilson Staff in Josh Wilson MP for Fremantle.

Defence Budget Isn’t Supporting Local Jobs

It's pretty clear that there needs to be less self-congratulation from the government and a lot more application to the very difficult challenges ahead. Let me as a Western Australian say that, so far, with regard to support and opportunities for local companies and workers, whether they are companies like Austal or small and medium enterprises like the Henderson Alliance, from their point of view it's been a case of all show and no dough.

Mr Wilson (6:33pm) — It's critical for government to get defence expenditure and procurement right for several reasons—firstly, to ensure that our Defence Force is properly resourced to provide for Australia's security needs and to contribute to regional and global security, including through peacekeeping missions. As part of that, it's vital that our service women and men are supported to do their difficult and dangerous work as well and as safely as possible. We also have to get it right because defence expenditure, like all government spending, involves the allocation of scarce resources, making decisions that inevitably come with opportunity costs. The key issue here this evening is the question of how defence spending develops Australian capacity and expertise, creates jobs and builds on what is currently a below-par defence export industry.

Before I say more on that, I want to make a point in passing that there's a strange disconnect or blind spot in this government's approach to national security. There's a lot of chest-beating about defence expenditure reaching the highest level since 1994, but we hear virtually nothing, in pride or in sorrow, about the fact that Australia's international development budget will fall to 0.2 per cent of GNI, the lowest in our history. For a government that puts great stock in its national security credentials, it's bizarre that no-one in the government talks about the relationship between international assistance and regional peace and security. You simply cannot be serious about national or regional security and run down the delivery of well-targeted foreign aid in the way this government has done. You can't be serious about national and regional security while ignoring the looming and steepening impact of climate change. As former head of the Defence Force retired admiral Chris Barrie has said, our response so far to the 'existential threat' of climate change is not good enough.

I'm glad the government has embarked on a naval shipbuilding program, but I'm conscious there is an enormous challenge before all of us if we are to see that occur in a way that meets our strategic needs, provides value for money and leverages defence spending to create a domestic design, shipbuilding and sustainment capability. The fact is Australia performs poorly when it comes to the value of our defence related exports as a ratio of defence spending. Other nations with comparable levels of spending parlay that into export-earning opportunities for their businesses and jobs for their citizens. We do not, and we're kidding ourselves if we think that repairing that imbalance will be easy. On the contrary, what may well be easy, relatively speaking, is for other countries to have a very healthy piece of that $200 billion defence budget, and the evidence of the government's approach to date doesn't give a lot of confidence on that front.

I feel for the member for Fisher. His motion was listed midweek, and on Friday there was evidence given to a Senate inquiry that the defence department chief had personally called the three international bidders who were part of the $35 billion future frigates program to tell them that they don't need to work with local companies. There was similarly concerning evidence given to the treaties committee about the $50 billion Future Submarines. I was very surprised as a member of that committee when we looked at the agreement to find that the relevant provision said the French government, through DCNS, would facilitate the involvement of Australian businesses on an equal basis with French companies. I thought to myself, 'Well, surely it's our money, it's our project; Australian companies ought to participate on a preferred basis, all things being equal,' and I sought to recommend a change to that aspect of the agreement, but government members preferred to merely call on the Australian government to revisit that principle in the detailed contractual arrangements. It does worry me that the high-level agreement between Australia and France on this very costly project was settled in language that set an unnecessarily weak obligation in terms of our industry's participation.

It's pretty clear that there needs to be less self-congratulation from the government and a lot more application to the very difficult challenges ahead. Let me as a Western Australian say that, so far, with regard to support and opportunities for local companies and workers, whether they are companies like Austal or small and medium enterprises like the Henderson Alliance, from their point of view it's been a case of all show and no dough.

Defence spending is serious stuff. It should be discussed in an open, warts and all fashion. It shouldn't be sacred territory. It must always be shaped by a rigorous consideration of our strategic needs. It must be fit for purpose. It must be determined and supervised by a civilian government free of any inhibition that regards defence as an area of decision-making in which only people with defence experience can fully participate. Finally, if we're serious about national security, we have to reconcile the current disconnect between our policies and expenditure on defence and our policies and expenditure on foreign aid and climate change.

New Development & Heritage Protection in Freo, East Freo, and Cockburn

Published 11 Sep 2017 by Kath - Josh Wilson Staff in Josh Wilson MP for Fremantle.

In the City of Fremantle, there's been a huge effort since 2009 to bring economic and social revitalisation into the heart of the city while protecting its distinctive character. Two recent milestones show this balanced effort.

Mr Wilson (4:12pm) — I am fortunate to represent a community in which local government is focused on creating urban centres that prioritise liveability, sustainability and transport-oriented and affordable housing. I have spoken before about the flourishing precinct at Cockburn Central. I also want to acknowledge the work that the town of East Fremantle has done to revamp its town centre, and I applaud East Freo council's effort to engage collaboratively, but firmly, with Defence on the sale and redevelopment of the Leeuwin Barracks site.

In the City of Fremantle, there's been a huge effort since 2009 to bring economic and social revitalisation into the heart of the city while protecting its distinctive character. Two recent milestones show this balanced effort. At the end of May, the very substantial restoration of the Fremantle Town Hall was unveiled—a long-awaited and wonderful piece of work. This adds to an unprecedented level of heritage conservation investment since 2009, including some key projects that occurred with the support of the former Labor government. In that time, we've seen major restoration work to the Hilton Community Centre, the Princess May building, the Fremantle Markets, the old Fremantle Boys School, the Fremantle Arts Centre and the Bathers Bay precinct.

The other milestone marking the creation of new development in the CBD was the sod-turning for the Kings Square project. This transformational joint venture will bring 1,500 new government workers to the CBD and create street-level retail, entertainment and public realm improvements. I've no doubt it will be the catalyst of profound renewal in the heart of Fremantle.