Freo's View


Posted in aboriginal, art, culture, fremantle, western australia by freoview on August 31, 2016

Two new exhibitions open this Friday at Fremantle’s Japingka Gallery at 47 High Street, so if you are interested in great Aboriginal art go and see the shows!

Camel Camp & Beyond – Utopia Artists of the Eastern Desert. Showcases the beautiful and uplifting work of both the Elders and the emerging younger generations of Artists in what is a breathtaking and beautiful depiction and celebration of ties to the land and to country. Elders represented in this stunning Exhibition include: Angelina Ngal Pwerle, Josie Petrick Kemarre, Cowboy Loy Pwerle, Gladdy Kemarre, Kathleen Ngale, Susan Pitjara Hunter and Polly Ngale. There is also a wonderful and exciting group of paintings by younger generation Artists such as : Sandy Pitjara Hunter, Joy Kngwarreye Jones, Denisa Hatches, Bessie Pitjara and Elizabeth Mbitjana amply demonstrate that the Utopia Art Movement is alive and well and in very talented hands!

 George Tuckerbox Exhibition – Art from the Great Sandy Desert. George Tuckerbox presents his paintings from the Great Sandy Desert at Japingka Gallery, opening on Friday 2 September. While Tuckerbox has exhibited with his fellow community artists since 2003, this will be his first solo show. Tuckerbox lives at Wangkatjungka in the south-east corner of the Kimberley and made his first paintings in mid 1990s. He walked in from the desert with his family when he was a child. His recognition maps of the desert are his testimony to his ancestral desert homelands.

 Exhibitions open 6.30pm Friday 2nd September, and run daily until 28th October, 2016



Posted in education, fremantle, law&order, notre dame university, western australia by freoview on August 31, 2016

The Fremantle Notre Dame University is operating a pop-up clinic to give free legal advise this Saturday September 3, operated by alumni and experienced staff of the School of Law.

All issues are covered from family law, to criminal, commercial, mental health and general law. Sessions will be for 45 minutes.

It will run from 9 am till 5 pm. Make an appointment on 9433 0745  to get a free consultation.

Roel Loopers



Posted in city of fremantle, community, election, local government, politics, western australia by freoview on August 31, 2016

The candidates’ forum of the Beaconsfield Ward by-election at the Hilton Bowling Club on Tuesday evening did not rock the boat but was still interesting for other reasons. One not often sees members of the Fremantle Society, FICRA and the Fremantle Residents and Ratepayers Association at these suburban meetings and none of them were at the election forum in Beacy in October last year when I was a candidate.

That might have had to do with the fact that candidate Andrew Luobikis is a big supporter of these community groups, so they were clearly out there to support him and possibly are helping him with letterbox drops etc.

Candidate Hannah Fitzhardinge also had her Labor party supporters in the public, with even Simone McGurk turning up, as did Councillors Dave Hume, Dave Coggin and Rachel Pemberton.

The same issues always come up at these forums; crime, antisocial behaviour, maintenance, parking and shopping, communication, transparency and accountability, and rates.

It was a pretty positive forum though where Andrew Luobikis was the candidate who criticised Fremantle Council most, especially about Kings Square, poor decision-making and poor community consultation.

Fedele Camarda said Fremantle has the same problems other communities have and that he intended to consult and listen, if elected. He would be guided by people in his decision-making.

Fedele said there needed to be other forms of revenue raising for COF and it needed good budget management. He also said the ugly entry to the city for cruise ship passengers needed to be beautified.

Peter Cruickshank said the vibe and culture of Fremantle is attractive, but that the city needs to develop smart and well, and maintain its heritage. He wants better value for money for rates and tangible infrastructure. He would be asking a lot of questions and seek advise .

Peter also believes State Housing density in Fremantle needs to be reduced and spread out more. I want to do what is best for my family, Beacy and Fremantle, he said.

Andrew Luobikis said the City was giving away the family silver with the Kings Square Project and that it made poor planning decisions. The KS project will have a profound affect on the City’s finances, he claimed.

Andrew wants a fair share for Beaconsfield and rates capped at CPI. Council is accountable to its shareholders and community consultation is essential. He also said the police did little to stop crime in the area and that there was too much party politics at council level.

Hannah Fitzhardinge is the only female candidate for Beacy and she made the important point that 51% of the Fremantle popultation is female but that there are only two female Councillors. Only one in five leadership positions in Australia are taken up by women, she told us.

Hannah believes the City of Fremantle should become a more responsive organisation with real community engagement and that she would be asking the right questions at the right time. She said it was very important to find the common ground by bringing in the community early in the conversation, and I absolutely agree with her on this!

She said there needed to be a masterplan for Beaconsfield that included the so-called Bronx but also the former quarry site. Fremantle has a history of inclusiveness we need to continue.

Hannah believes that Fremantle deserves much more support and investment from State Government as it is more than just a local council because of our historic importance and tourist town. The burden for that should not be on the ratepayers alone and the State should pay its fair share.

Local government is about local people and should not be by political parties, Hannah stated.

And while all that was going on there were dancing classes and silver shoes next door. It was a very Freo and mainly positive evening where I was  especially impressed with the level headedness and positive attitude of Hannah Fitzhardinge.

Roel Loopers



Posted in city of fremantle, fireworks, local government, western australia by freoview on August 31, 2016

The application by the Fremantle Harbour Traders Community to put on their own fireworks on Australia Day will be a big dilemma for the City of Fremantle. On one hand the City will want to accommodate and appease the irate traders in the port city, but on the other hand they can’t claim to have stopped the City’s fireworks for culturally sensitive reasons and then let business people do it anyway. That would be hypocritical.

There is no doubt that the Fishing Boat Harbour traders are the ones who get the most business out of the Australia Day fireworks. It is most likely their busiest day of the year and bring in tens of thousands of dollars when thousands of people sit at Bathers Beach and the Esplanade, many consuming take away fish and chips and others sitting in one of the alfresco areas of the restaurants and the harbour.

The push is on and Fremantle Councillors will have to make a very difficult and challenging decision.

I believe the whole issue has been very badly and naively handled by the City of Fremantle which should engage external Public Relation consultants to spread these kind of controversial messages to the community. To make it an Aboriginal issue was always going to be highly divisive with a negative backlash.

Had the City come out and said they want to celebrate Australia Day in a different form than other councils and spread it over 2-3 days while stopping the fireworks it could have been a more palatable message. It could also have considered putting on alternative fireworks on the last Sunday of the Fremantle Festival, or team up with the Blessing of the Fleet and make that traditional fireworks bigger and better and promote it more.

It’s a real shame that such a fantastic city as Fremantle has so many controversies and so much negativity.

Roel Loopers


Posted in aboriginal, art, arthur head, city of fremantle, heritage, tourism, western australia by freoview on August 30, 2016

J Shed


The ruling by the WA Planning Commission against a tavern and live outdoor music venue at J Shed should encourage the City of Fremantle and the local community to come together and find better ways of activating Arthur Head, as the changes made by the City have not been successful.

There have been very good ideas talked about for many years, so maybe it is time to listen to the resident artists at J Shed, the volunteer heritage guides at the Roundhouse and local residents.

One impressive way would be to extend the boardwalk from Kidogo Arthouse, the former kerosene store, to J Shed and create a historic walk with significant heritage signs about the whaling station, limestone quarry and Mews fishing industry, and link it with the Maritime Museum and the harbour where thousands of migrants arrived by ship. This would also make the connection from the present port to the historic long jetty ‘port’ just south of Kidogo.

Add to that a sculpture park and  small children’s playground in front of J Shed and make the No 1 studio a cafe and art gallery with function availability for weddings, etc. A small alfresco deck to watch the Indian Ocean will no doubt attract locals and tourists alike.

It should also be contemplated if it is a viable move to relocate the Walyalup Aboriginal Cultural Centre, but it would need to have a tourism priority with music and dancing for cruise ship passengers and the sale of Aboriginal art and craft and maybe even bushtucker.

When we talk about activating the area we should keep in mind that already 120,000 people a year come to visit the Roundhouse, so we need to offer them something else so they’ll linger longer. A combination of history and art, plus a small hospitality outlet will no doubt help the activation.

The Roundhouse guides are also in the process of getting all new modern, interactive interpretive displays in the cells and power will be connected to the oldest public building in the state. That will create the opportunity of doing special night events and tours during the warmer months. That would help to activate the ghost town Arthur Head is at night at present and stop homeless people from invading the old Pilots Cottages.

The Pilots Cottages need another form of activation as the present occupants do very little to attract visitors to the area with their abstract paintings, so maybe it is time to let go off the art precinct idea up at Captain’s Lane and make it more of a tourist shopping destination, selling Freo T-shirts, craft, art and souvenirs, but ideally there should be 24/7 activity that discourages anti social behaviour at Arthur Head. The Glen Cowans underwater photo gallery is a highly visible and professional presence next to the Roundhouse and should be emulated to achieve high quality offerings to tourists and local Fremantle people.

I also still believe a Saturday morning art and craft market in front of J Shed would attract a lot of people, so let’s have a public debate about this, listen, learn, collaborate, create, and make Arthur Head THE go to part of Fremantle for visitors and locals. Together we can do it!

Roel Loopers


Posted in city of fremantle, climate change, environment, global warming, western australia by freoview on August 30, 2016

A report on Channel Nine TV last night by Jane Grljusich painted a wet future for the west end of Fremantle where rising sea levels due to global warming will see many coastal properties disappear in the Indian Ocean unless seawalls are being built.

Grljusich talked about flooded cellars in the west of Fremantle that already require 24/7 pumping by the building owners.

The predicted higher ocean levels would see the Roundhouse become an island and even flooding of the Esplanade, so the state and federal governments need to become pro-active in making plans on how to protect Fremantle’s coast line and significant heritage area.

There is a Cockburn Sound Coastal Alliance where the cities of Fremantle, Cockburn, Kwinana and Rockingham work together and Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt told the TV reporter a plan will be released in a few weeks.

I have wondered for a long time why governments still allow so much development very close to the coast, as at Coogee for example, and wonder if insurance companies are still willing to insure properties in locations where rising seawater levels will create flooding and damage.

Are people naive or just don’t care that their expensive houses might get flooded or destroyed in 15-20 years from now, and what responsibility do governments have when releasing coastal land for development?

And to add insult too injury and make life even worse for us is a report from Brazil that climate change will cut coffee production by 50%, which no doubt will mean much higher prices for coffee in caffeine-mad Freo in the future.

Roel Loopers


Posted in city of fremantle, community, TRAFFIC, western australia by freoview on August 30, 2016

There are two interesting events on this evening, sadly both at the same time, so it requires a choice on which one to attend.

At the Hilton Bowling Club the four candidates for the Beaconsfield Ward by-election will be grilled by the community on what their ideas and hopes for Fremantle are. It starts at 7 pm and is free. The postal election will be on September 16.

Also on at 7 pm at the Local Hotel  are the City of Fremantle’s proposed solutions for traffic calming and beautification of South Terrace between Douro Road and South Street, so a very important presentation for local South Freo people and those of us who frequent the area often. The event is free, bar is open and meals for sale.

Roel Loopers


Posted in food, fremantle, hospitality, western australia by freoview on August 30, 2016

Just a reminder that the Moore&Moore cafe in Fremantle’s Henry Street this evening will have health food guru Tyler Tolman as their speaker in the Vital Table Talks series.

Tolman is a believer in whole, natural foods as the way of changing your life for good and has been studying ancient civilisations to learn their secrets.

Tonight Tolman with share their secrets and the M&M will offer a healthy meal of puy lentils, baby leek braise with fennel and sage, jerky mushroom salad, vegetable noodles, spicy crisp raw root chips and cashew pesto.

It costs $ 47, concessions $ 34 and bookings can be made on

Roel Loopers




The Fremantle community has won an important step against the development of a tavern and live outdoor music venue at J Shed on Arthur Head with the WA Planning Commission refusing the application by Sunset Events.

This from the WAPC Minutes put on-line just minutes ago:

Officer’s Recommendation:

That the Statutory Planning Committee resolves to refuse the application for proposed special event (live music) venue and the alterations and additions to allow for a change of use to a tavern at Lot 2051 (Unit 1), Reserve 21263 Fleet Street, Fremantle as shown on the plan amended plans received 11 July 2016, for the following reason(s):

The WAPC’s reason(s) for refusal are:

  1. The proposed application does not comply with the requirements of the Clause 30 of the Metropolitan Region Scheme as it is inconsistent with the purpose for which the land is reserved under the scheme, inconsistent with the orderly and proper planning of the locality and does not allow the preservation of amenities in the locality.
  2. Approval to the application would set an undesirable precedent for the development of other Parks and Recreation Reserves which would undermine the objectives and requirements of the Metropolitan Region Scheme.

Members discussed the Officer’s report and considered the deputations and presentations. It was noted there were a number of reasons for refusal outlined in the Officer’s report which needed to be included in the recommendation to provide further clarity. This includes, noncompliance with development control policies and the City of Fremantle’s local planning policies. The revised recommendation for refusal will be circulated out of session for a decision.


Motion to defer

Unanimous agreement by all members

The item relating to Proposed Tavern and Ticketed Live Music Events Venue as detailed in the report dated 12 August 2016, be deferred for out of session consideration with a revised refused recommendation with additional reasons for recommendation.

There is one avenue left now for Sunset Events to try to get approval and that is the State Administrative Tribunal.

Roel Loopers




The sun is out in Fremantle and I needed fresh air, sunshine and a nice walk, so I went and had a look at the progress of development around the CBD.

I started at the huge Defence Housing site at Queen Victoria and Quarry Street where building will start early next year. It is opposite the impressive Heirloom development of the old woolstores there, so two significant residential developments in the east of the CBD.

Over in the west end a lot is happening with the gorgeous Elders building in Cliff Street, the Quest Hotel on the corner of Pakenham and Short streets and the residential development on the corner of Pakenham and Bannister streets all opening very soon.

The Quest Hotel looks more acceptable now that the cladding has been put up, but for my liking it is still one storey too high for Pakenham Street.

The Atwell Arcade building is also close to opening, so we’ll see more office workers in the city soon.

City planning is a huge challenge for every local council, but without development there can’t be progress, so it is good to see Fremantle is moving forward to becoming a modern city with a beautiful heritage heart.

Roel Loopers



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