From the Freo Council Chambers in March



Freo Photo Comp Winners and Answers

Congratulations to Kylie  Richardson for being this year’s winner of the Freo Photo Comp.

Kylie extraordinarily got all 15 answers correct despite me making it harder this year

Big shout out to Ellen McCarthy and  Cas Pearson who came very close with all but Council  couple right.

Thanks to all of that entered and had a go. It was fun.

Here are the answers:

  1. Douro Rd cnr Hulbert Street
  2. Outside the Orange Box, Leighton Beach
  3. Inside the old Fort Knox Building, Heirloom by Match
  4. Inside the Cantonment Hill Signal Station
  5. Army Accommodation, Queen Victoria St (rear)
  6. Fremantle Prison (East-side)
  7. Federal Hotel Balcony (formally Rosie O’Grady’s)
  8. Laneway between Phillimore and High St in the West End behind New Orleans Cafe
  9. 22 Cliff Street, standing in front of the façade looking East
  10. Knutsford St, West of the Business Foundations Entrance of the Prison
  11. The Attic Café, Looking onto Bannister St
  12. Atwell Arcade Development first floor
  13. From the Tow Hall Tower at Town Hall, looking South
  14. Wilhelmsen House (Mediterranean Shipping Company)
  15. Quest Hotel, Looking South down Pakenham Street

Freo Photo Comp extended

I have had some requests to extend the photo comp. I think I might have made it a bit hard this year.

So keep your answers or even random guesses coming in. I will hide blog post answers to make it fair but you can post as a comment or email me at

I will close it off and reveal the answers on Sunday the 22nd

Check it out here:

Until then enjoy your summer.

Normal, regular blog transmission will resume around this time too.

comp-11PS A hint this is not my backyard as one witty punter guessed.

End of 2016 Freo Photo Competition

As a way of closing off another year I thought I’d end the year with another little fun Freo photo competition with some snaps I took throughout the year.

The first person to write and tell me where in Fremantle each of the following 15 photos was taken from (not what they were taken of) gets the not all that amamzing prize of me buying them lunch in Fremantle at a café (you get to to choose at least!).

If no one gets them all then the winner will be the person with the most correct answers. Number of each photo is just underneath each photo.

Thanks for reading and commenting on Freo issues throughout 2016.

This blog and I are planning to have a couple of weeks off so Happy New Year and see you in 2017!

















Freo Network: Local Business in Fremantle. Monday, 6pm, National Hotel.

This Monday at 6pm the Freo Network will be hosting a a discussion on local business in Fremantle.

Featuring Olwyn Williams, CEO of the Chamber of Commerce, plus a panel of local business people including Natasha Atkinson (Fremantle Markets), Kate Hulett (MANY 6160 and Kate and Able) and Karl Bullers (The National Hotel).

The discussion will centre on the current challenges and also opportunities for business in Fremantle. And we will ask each of the panelists what their vision for Fremantle is, and how the community can help make it a reality.

For those of you that didn’t know, the Fremantle Network is a community based forum for discussion on Fremantle issues, providing a much needed opportunity for “inclusive networking”.

Through open discussion of issues and constructive community engagement, we believe that creative solutions can be found to improve our lives here in Fremantle. It is about getting us out of our silos and collaborating. A rainbow of views making something beautiful perhaps!

6pm, Monday 24 October – upstairs at the National Hotel.


WGV takes out Australian Award for Urban Design

WGV at White Gum Valley by CODA Studio, Urbis, Landcorp and Josh Byrne and Associates.

SHAC at WGV,  White Gum Valley by CODA Studio, Urbis, Landcorp and Josh Byrne and Associates. Image: Landcorp

Australia Award for Urban Design, Policies, Programs and Concepts – Small Scale

Jury citation:
White Gum Valley aims to realise a diverse, highly sustainable infill development that reflects and enhances its suburban surrounds. The highly collaborative process embraced multiple entities and disciplines and has initiated a new nationally significant model for higher density infill development. The project incorporates and celebrates sustainability across ten ‘one planet living’ principles, and ties this to the creation of a thriving, resilient and diverse community. WGV at White Gum Valley is a project of genuine innovation and leadership.

About the entry:
As an “Innovation through Demonstration” project, WGV demonstrates the economic and social benefits of sustainable development and creates a blueprint for the planning and development of small infill sites within an established suburb. The success of WGV is testament to the collaborative and forward-thinking approach of its multi-disciplinary design team.

In 2008, a two-hectare site approximately three kilometres from the centre of Fremantle became available to be developed into housing. Landcorp identified the unique qualities of the location and the opportunity for an innovative approach to urban and built form.

The project has ambitiously applied a multi-faceted approach to sustainability, with affordable housing typologies and various environmental initiatives woven into the design. A relationship was entered into with Curtin University’s Sustainability Policy (CUSP) that has seen the entire development set up as a ‘living laboratory’ to monitor energy use, resident behaviour, take up of energy initiatives and the implementation of the Design Guidelines.

Location: Perth, WA

Portugal and Australia’s Renewable Energy Debate

I am now in Portugal where I will soon to head to Madeira to celebrate the 20th year of Fremantle’ sister city relationship with Funchal on the weekend.

I have had a couple of very enjoyable weeks off and I did my best to have a rejuvenating break. Travelling around, though, I couldn’t help but reflect on what I have seen in the UK and Portugal and what it might means for Fremantle and Australia.

With a bit of distance from Australia, the debate that was perhaps most depressing was Australia’s insular debate over renewable energy.

The argument that solar and wind were responsible for the South Australia’s extraordinary blackout and that an ambitious renewable energy target could not be compatible for a robust and stable electricity grid seemed, at best, rather silly and uniformed from the side of the world.

While Australian politicians are having a frustratingly unproductive debate over a future renewable energy target; here in Portugal – a country not nearly as wealthy as Australia but also well-endowed with wind and sun – they have quietly got on with the necessary transition to a low carbon electricity supply.

Like the better known renewable energy leaders of Germany and Denmark, in Portugal windfarms are highly visible in the countryside and solar on widespread.

Portugal now gets over 50% of its electricity from renewable sources and more power from wind than it does coal. In fact they were producing so much renewable energy earlier this year they ran on clean energy alone for 4 days. It certainly puts some of the debates on renewable following South Australia into perspective.

And the innovation is continuing. I was invited to visit the local council of Peniche that showed us research they were doing in the area of wave energy that was currently providing the equivalent of power of 4000 homes in their area. It was a different model to the one being developed by Carnegie Energy in North Fremantle but one that also had an Australia connection.

Bombora Wave Power with the support of a grant from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), has shown through its trials off Portugal that the cost of electricity its wave farms will be comparable to the cost of electricity from off-shore wind farms and solar arrays in Europe by 2023.

Bombora have proposed a 60MW wave farm in Peniche, Portugal which will be 2.5km long, approximately 700m offshore, with 40 1.5MW wave converters deployed at a depth of 10 metres. Electricity generated is to be delivered into the grid via subsea cables.

What I love about travelling is that it often inspires that better alternatives are possible and reminds me that sometimes we way we do things in Australia isn’t always the best way. It also reminds me how lucky we have it in Australia and our nation’s extraordinary potential. But potential can’t be realised without the necessary leadership.