On The Pulse on Nine News

For some light-hearted weekend viewing, I had a lot of fun as a guest on The Pulse on 9 News with Brendan Foster this week. We even came up with an outlandish new tourist idea for Freo….


The Fremantle Network’s West End Forum: 6pm Monday 22 May

Hear three different perspectives on Fremantle’s historic West End:

  • Celia Hammond, Vice Chancellor of the University of Notre Dame, will share their activation plan for the west end.
  • Gaelle Beech from Anjel MS, is one of the West End traders, and will discuss the area from a business point of view.
  • Maryrose Baker and Richard Mehan from the Fremantle Inner City Residents Association (FICRA) will share a residents perspective and vision for our historic heart.

Join in the discussion and share your vision for this very special part of our city.

6pm Monday 22 May upstairs at the National Hotel. See you there.


Best Headline of the Week “Freo council bows to powerful children’s lobby, approves park”

This amusing article about kid power in Freo appeared in the Age and WA Today this week. It is a very Freo story and is worth a read…

“Freo council bows to powerful children’s lobby, approves park” by  Emma Young
Outspoken children in Hilton have successfully lobbied their local council to create a local park from an underused space, threatening that without one they would be “bored forever”.

Local mother Karina Tedesco said residents had wanted a local park for a long time.

Developers had not included one when the area was developed and children, not allowed to go alone to neighbourhood parks because it meant crossing Carrington or South Streets, resorted to playing on the Anchor Food Factory verges.

Plans for a pocket park on the east end of Clarke Street, Hilton, were discussed in council almost a decade ago but had been blocked by a “vocal minority”.

“Oldies came out of the woodwork, threatened to lie down in front of bulldozers,” Ms Tedesco said.

In 2007, a park was discussed again but nothing eventuated.

Finally, the City wrote to residents offering to consult on a pocket park in a cul-de-sac, even inviting children to workshop the design.

They were given A3 printouts of an aerial image of the site, playdough, pipe cleaners and coloured matchsticks and told to build their dream park to give the council ideas for the final plan.

When the plan went before Council, local parents and children were determined this time, it would not be voted down.

Mothers came with letters from their children, and 10-year-old, Xanthe West, came with her father and read hers out directly to Council.

Xanthe told the councillors that other Hilton parks were great.

“Let’s say, for example, Black Stump Park, that one’s good,” she said.

“But it’s not always easy. We all have to cross South Street. It is a busy as well as very risky road to cross. One day, there was a lady who got hit at the crossing lights there. My mum, my sister Niamh and I were at the doctors at the time, when she was raced into the nurses’ room. That’s how dangerous it really is. How nice would it be, not having to cross any dangerous roads like that to get to a park.”

“When Xanthe got up to speak, you should have seen the mayors face. It was this mixture of impressed and “is she allowed? Shock!” Ms Tedesco said.

“She spoke so eloquently and was so composed for a 10-year-old.”

Ms Tedesco read letters from her 10-year-old Adelia, who was not allowed to go to the bigger parks on her own.

“If I had a park, I could be more energetic and happy because when I go out I would be running around at a park rather than staying at home inside all day,” she wrote.

The letter from her brother, eight-year-old Jaden, was short and to the point.

Dear Council, my name is Jaden and I am 8 years old. If we do not build this park, kids will be bored forever!” he wrote.

“Well, maybe not forever, but for a long time. Jaden.”

Council approved the park unanimously.

The final design for a 600-square-metre park sandwiched between two main roads and an industrial site includes everything the children asked for.

And it wasn’t just kids hanging out for it, Ms Tedesco said.

“There is a Street by Street group in the area that gathers every once in a while for afternoon tea or a bake off or Christmas drinks and it’s often done in someone’s backyard around there,” she said.

“This is a tight knit community and there are all ages involved and we are so excited to have somewhere to meet.”

The plan also aims to make the park inviting for industrial site workers having lunch.

The City of Fremantle is a partner of 202020 Vision, an initiative to increase urban green space 20 per cent by 2020.

202020 Vision, in partnership with The Neighbourhood Project, has just launched Park It, a 10-step video and guide to help communities transform their grey or underused spaces.

From the Council Chambers. April 2017

The latest addition of From the Council Chambers. Enjoy.:)



Jane’s Walks are free, citizen-led walking tours where locals get together to explore and talk about their neighbourhoods and they celebrate the approach of Jane Jacobs (1916-2006) who was an urbanist and activist whose writings championed a fresh, community-based approach to city building.

The walking tours are part of the annual Jane’s Walk movement of free citizen-led walking tours. In 2016, Jane’s Walks took place across 6 continents, 36 countries, 210 cities, in the form of over 1000 walks. This year the walks will be happening from the Friday 5th to Sunday 7th May in New York, Toronto, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Rio, Mumbai, Perth and Freo!

Fremantle – Peter Newman (May 7 9:30am – Meet front of Bathers Beach Cafe)

Delve into the great activist stories that have shaped Freo’s culture, buildings, public spaces and strong stance for people over cars. Join Peter Newman for a free Sunday morning stroll where we’ll learn more about the community that makes Freo such a special place! You’ll be encouraged to add your stories and observations of life as a resident, worker or visitor as we reflect on life in our progressive patch, and how the active community here inspires other parts of Perth.

South Fremantle – David Snyder (May 13 10:00am – Meet front of Galati & Sons)

Take some time out to discover the local stories of South Freo! Meet at Galati & Sons and learn about the cultural history of Wray Ave. Share your local experiences and hear about the hidden stories in our neighbourhood. We will complete our free walking tour with some wise words about our exciting South Freo from the legends behind ‘The Local Hotel’.


There are others in South Perth, Inglewood, West Leederville and Beechboro too.

Websites – www.facebook.com/janeswalkperth or www.janeswalk.org/australia/perth



The Fremantle Network Monday 24th at the National

Rock up for some interesting discussion from Freo locals on what is happening in and around Freo. This month…

Dimitri Kapetas, from EHDO architecture

EHDO is very excited to be in the process of designing the first Nightingale Housing project in WA, here in Fremantle at 29 Wood Street.

Nightingale Housing is a non-profit organisation formed by a group of leading Australian architects. It aims to create affordable housing models that are specifically designed to achieve environmental and social benefits for cities. In other words, Nightingale promotes the building of communities, not just market commodities.

Michael McPhail, the Deputy Mayor of the Town of East Fremantle (and Western Australia’s youngest!)

His passion for cities and making them better places for the people that live in them infuses everything he does.

The focus of his talk will be the future of the Leeuwin Barracks, and the impact this will have on the future of Greater Fremantle.

Originally educated as an urban planner, Michael now works for global real estate firm CBRE to market Perth’a next generation of apartment living.

As a Councillor, Michael’s key focus include ensuring meaningful community engagement in the redevelopment of Leeuwin Barracks and reimagining of East Fremantle Oval, leading East Fremantle’a push to ban single use plastic bags and championing the upgrading of East Fremantle’s exceptional foreshore.

6pm, Monday 24 April
Upstairs at the National Hotel

Sleep Out Under the Stars 2017

Come on down to the beautiful surrounds of the University of Notre Dame for one of Freo’s favourite fundraisers.
Sleep Out Under the Stars is a very special evening, hosted by St. Patrick’s Community Support Centre and the University of Notre Dame to raise funds and awareness for homelessness.

Join us for an evening of live music, kids’ activities and community spirit…you can then opt to stay over in the gorgeous Malloy Courtyard or Prindiville Hall…or you can head home to your own bed 🙂

Musical acts this year include the soulful jazz stylings of Lois Olney, folk songstress Ezer Eve and of course the fabulous Starlight Hotel featuring clients from St. Pat’s.

Soup provided by Empyrean and crusty bread from Bread in Common.

This ia a family-friendly event…no alcohol permitted.

This is a wonderful way to start a conversation with your friends and family around homelessness…but it’s also a lot of fun too. Hope to see you there!

Saturday May the 6th from 5.30pm at University of Notre Dame Australia

19 Mouat Street, Fremantle