Josh’s House Public Opening a Resounding Success

Even the good weather turned out for Sustainable House Day last Sunday, as over 4,000 people made the most of the first public opportunity to visit the Josh’s House project to see firsthand what environmental scientist and ABC TV gardening celebrity Josh Byrne and his collaborators have created.

With event staff, the City of Fremantle and Phase 3 Landscape Construction working at a frantic pace to get the venue ready.

With the street in lock down the smell of sizzling gourmet hotdogs, wood fired pizzas and freshly ground coffee permeated a hive of activity as industry partners shared information ranging from gabion walls to energy efficient window furnishings.

Queues started early, at one point trailing off around the corner of the street (see pic below), proving that sustainable living is high on the agenda for many people in the community.

Out front Josh was in his element, filming episode 11 for the Josh’s House series which you can check out at

Joshs House Open Day

About Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog
City of Fremantle Mayor

4 Responses to Josh’s House Public Opening a Resounding Success

  1. dianaryan says:

    I hope Josh will be donating the considerable gate receipts to the homeless, Brad – now and in to the future.

    Josh is no Michael Mobbs. He received sponsorship from multiple parties, as I understand, to undertake a concept that is not new, and would no doubt have alleviated the amount of money he now has to pay to house his and his extended family.

    Regardless of the X, Y, Z of so-called sustainability aspects you may care to list, the fact is Josh has still received a great privilege in a world where “affordable housing” is relative at best and laughable at worst.

    • Diana
      The sponsorship paid for the open days and communications aspects not the houses themselves.
      It is a great project and a first in WA and could be a game changer in terms of affordability (especially running costs) and sustainability and I am proud to have had Freo involved.
      cheers, Brad

      • dianaryan says:

        I don’t know where you’ve been, Brad, but that is certainly not a first for Perth (especially running costs). And if CoF paid for the open days, then who does the 1000s in entry fees go to?

      • Diana also see reply fro Josh and co on Roel’s blog…

        Darcy said, on September 14, 2013 at 3:15 pm
        Hello Roel,

        Thank you for your comments.

        The day certainly was a success and we have had some very positive feedback from the community.
        Given the interest in the Josh’s House project, and Josh as a presenter on Gardening Australia, we initially estimated the attendance at the event to be anywhere between 2,500 to 3000 people.

        The City of Fremantle’s Event Guidelines and our Risk Management Plan identified that with these expected numbers; security, traffic management, portable toilets and appropriate public liability insurance for both the street event and the houses was required. We also quickly realised that an experienced site management company was needed to ensure the safety of the patrons and the local community.

        To clarify, the City of Fremantle did not pay the event costs or its communications, this was paid for by Josh through his business Josh Byrne & Associates (JBA). The City of Fremantle covered some of their charges through their existing in-kind agreement with the Josh’s House project, such as event notification for residents, traffic management, printing, health licensing, rubbish removal and associated man-hours

        To offset a portion of the costs incurred by JBA, the decision was made to charge a $5 entry fee to Josh’s home only, whilst still keeping the street event as a free event for the community.

        Of the estimated 4000 people that attend the event, 3000 were counted through the door with 2,500 of those paying. Kids under 16 were free.

        The takings paid a portion of the costs incurred for the event management, site management company, security, toilets, equipment hire, public liability insurances, site repairs, marketing, branding etc.

        We hope you can appreciate the costs involved in running such an event and we would like to make it clear this was not run as a money making exercise. As mentioned the community response so far received says the event was a huge success for both the sustainable message and the local community, and we hope with further support from the community this event will become a regular highlight in the City of Fremantle’s calendar.

        Kindest Regards
        D’arcy Hodgkinson
        Communications and Media Manager
        Josh Byrne & Associates

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