Freo's View


Posted in alcohol, city of fremantle, health, Uncategorized by freoview on November 1, 2017




The City of Fremantle’s Planning Committee will this evening deliberate if it will grant ALDI approval to change the use from shop to liquor shop in their South Fremantle shopping centre premises.

If Fremantle Council approves the application it would mean that three bottle shops would operate from the shopping centre on the corner of Douro and Hampton roads, as Liquorland and Dan Murphy’s already got shops there.


Roel Loopers


Posted in alcohol, fremantle, violence by freoview on July 1, 2015

If my memory serves me right Fremantle once had an “Accord” between the hospitality industry, the City and  the Police that was about the responsible service of alcohol. I thought that also included not having “Happy Hour” but by the look of it that no longer applies.

The Police Commissioner warned in the West Australian this week that “the alcohol industry has contributed to WA’s biggest substance abuse problem” that affects thousands of children and families and that has resulted in a huge increase in domestic violence, and that should be a serious concern for us all.

Whilst there is a move away from big booze barns to small bars, there also seems to be an increase in happy hours and cheap meal incentives to come to pubs more often and drink more. I noticed $ 6 pints at one CBD pub between 5-6 pm while one hotel on the main stretch has even introduced a lunch time happy hour. It does not say a lot about responsible service of alcohol when pub operators are trying to entice people to drink more at lunchtime, while at the same time they push for longer night hours.

Drink more, drink cheaper, drink longer and we’ll sell you a fifteen dollar steak is not great support for those in the community who want to reduce the intake of alcohol because it is a huge problem in society. How many more coward punches do we need to hear about? How many more young people have to die or become disabled because of alcohol related violence and drink-driving accidents before the hospitality industry wakes up and accept they have a corporate responsibility?

So what happened to the Fremantle Accord I wonder? When did it lapse, or did no one bother to keep it going? Can it be reinstated?

Roel Loopers


Posted in city of fremantle, homelessness, medicine hat by freoview on May 16, 2015

Maybe I am just a naive dogooder but the story about the city of Medicine Hat in the south of the Canadian state of Alberta inspired me and made me wish that we here in Fremantle would do something similar.

In 2009 the Medicine Hat Council pledged to put and end to homelessness in their city and six years later they have achieved it. No one spends more than ten days in emergency shelter or on the streets, as the city will provide them with a house.

The Mayor of Medicine Hat was against the proposal when he was still an Alderman on council in 2009, but says now he is totally converted and that the system works. He claims it also costs a lot less to provide people with accommodation than it costs to look after them while they are sleeping rough.

It breaks my heart here in Fremantle, in such a special place on earth, with great community spirit and in a very wealthy state in a very wealthy nation, that we have so many homeless people. I see 4-5 homeless people most early morning at the Freo Post Office, looking miserable and cold. Up at Captain’s Lane near the Round House, in the caves at Arthur Head, under the bushes and boardwalk at Bathers Beach, and in shop entries all over the city, many more of the poor bastards try to stay dry and warm and find some shelter. It makes me so sad and disappointed that we don’t look better after those who need our help.

Yes I know that some have themselves to blame, I am aware that some are drug addicts and others are alcoholics, but I also know that many have been raised in disfunctional families and had to endure violent and sexual abuse. Medicine Hat did not judge their homeless people, they did not blame them, and they did not say it is the State’s problem, they decided they could do something about it and they did, and we in Freo could do something similar!

Roel Loopers


Posted in aboriginal, fremantle, indigenous, western australia by freoview on March 31, 2015

Aboriginal issues are close to my heart and concern me a lot because I often feel I am watching the slow suicide of a beautiful culture and people, so hence this post.

It is far too simplistic to make the closure of Aboriginal communities a Black&White issue and one should not dismiss the arguments by the Commissioner of Police lightly.

No one should ever hesitate to combat child and sexual abuse in our society and no one should engage in political correctness and pretend it is not rampant in some Aboriginal communities. But one also has to consider that displacement has been one of the reasons why we have many disfunctional indigenous people in Australia.

One cannot ignore the past and we have to acknowledge that the pain of displacement and being forced off one’s land, together with the Stolen Generations issues, are partly to blame for the alcoholism, substance abuse and domestic and sexual violence in some communities. That does not make it acceptable though that sexual abuse is now the norm and accepted culture in some remote communities.

Forcing people away from their little patch of motherland will again create heart break and hardship and will push the problems elsewhere, like the move on notices police give in cities, that do not solve anything.

Aboriginal people should not put their head in the sand and pretend sexual abusive is not an extremely serious, and absolutely unacceptable, issue in some communities, but white people should also be more thoughtful and considerate about Aboriginal culture when trying to find solutions.

Forcefully moving Aboriginal people is akin to telling people in Spain they will now have to live in Finland. We all need to try to understand and accept the importance of what home means for our indigenous friends in this country, but at the same time we cannot compromise the safety and welfare of innocent children. That is a massive challenge for our society.

Roel Loopers


Posted in alcohol, fremantle by freoview on October 3, 2014

Congratulations to the Fremantle  Sail&Anchor and Clancy’s Fish Pub for being in the top ten of Australia’s best beer establishments in the inaugural Beer&Brewer magazine list.

The Sail came in at number six and Clancy’s at number 8.

Malicious rumours that Clancys’ turnover is dramatically down because I stopped drinking alcohol six months ago, are unfounded. The good news is that I’ll have the odd sip of nice wine and a good old Guinness again as off next week. Half a year of abstinence is enough.

Roel Loopers


Posted in australia, fremantle by freoview on May 26, 2014

It’s SORRY DAY today, a day where Australians should reflect on the wrongs of the past and the way we have treated the indigenous custodians of this land. The Stolen Generations are a very black mark in our nation’s history and it should never be forgotten.

For many decades generation after generation of Aboriginal people have suffered the consequences of this. Parents whose children were taken away from them, kids who grew up without parents and who were abused by those who were supposed to care for them. The hurt and humiliation, the displacement, the loss of culture and language, and that deep feeling of powerlessness, all resulted in many of our indigenous people taking to alcohol and drugs, and kids sniffing petrol, paint and glue.

No matter how well many might have meant it, it was wrong to take children from their parents, and our society is still dealing with the aftermath of it. Don’t judge those Aboriginal people who are lost, drunk and obnoxious, but ask why it is they became like this, and who forced them on the journey of despair they did not ask for.

Roel Loopers



Posted in fremantle by freoview on March 27, 2013

I am skeptical about the calls by the Western Australian Police for more restrictions and legislation to deal with drunks, because there are plenty of laws in place already that don’t appear to be enforced. Why do we need a law to outlaw drunks from pubs when the  responsible service of alcohol rules already apply? What needs to be done is to enforce those rules, so that greedy operators don’t continue to serve alcohol to people already severely affected by it. All it needs is to put a few officers with video cameras outside pubs and film those unable to walk who fall out of pubs past the bouncers. I have witnessed that often in Fremantle. It happens every weekend.

It is also already illegal to sell alcohol to under-aged people, but high school teenagers will tell you there are bottles shops in Freo all too happy to sell them alcohol in large amounts. To repeat myself, the laws need to be enforced and premises that don’t comply need to be shut down as punishment. Once it is hurting the back pocket severely they will learn the lesson of stopping to supply alcohol to minors and drunks.

But let’s forget the laws for a bit and ask why it is that people go out to get drunk. Stunning young women all dressed up to impress, often behave like trash once alcohol, and maybe other drugs, kill their sense of decency, self-worth and respect. It is awful to watch. Why do people need excessive amounts of alcohol to feel comfortable to socialise, is it insecurity, low self-esteem, or simply utter boredom or lack of social skills? Will laws ever change people’s unwillingness to take responsibility for themselves when they drink and consume drugs. I doubt it. Will closing hotels earlier let people drink less? I doubt it again, going by my observations of Scotland in the 80s when pubs closed very early and locals were in a mad rush to consume as much booze as they could get down their throats fast, ordering multiple drinks at the same time so there was no waiting lull between drinks.

Violence on the streets and domestic often happens because of alcohol and so do car crashes. It’s not an accident to crash a car while drink driving, it’s a crime, a deliberate act of irresponsible and anti-social behaviour. That should be rammed down the throats of the fools who have no concern for what damage they do to their community. As for those who serve alcohol irresponsibly. Close them down for six months. That will teach them.

Don’t get me wrong. I am not a wowser or against alcohol. I believe responsible drinking of alcohol is all part of the social fabric of our society. I love a couple of glasses of  red or a few cold beers when socialising with mates, and there have been many occasions in my long life where I had a glass or two too many, but I have never left home, or stayed at home, to deliberately get drunk. Losing face is not something I like and not a hobby we should aspire to. It’s pretty ugly.

Roel Loopers





Posted in fremantle by freoview on October 26, 2012

Don’t forget to join the Reclaim the Night in Fremantle this evening (Friday October 26) at 6.30. The march starts at Pioneer Park opposite the railway station and will go through the Cappuccino Strip and past the nightclubs and hotels to wind up at Kings Square where there will be speeches, entertainment and stalls.

Sadly Fremantle has become a place where many people don’t feel safe any longer on weekend nights because of drunkenness, violence and ant-social behaviour. That needs to stop. We all have the right to enjoy our city at any time of the day without fearing for our safety. Let’s get that message out loud and clear!

Roel Loopers



Posted in fremantle by freoview on October 24, 2012

Anti social behaviour at Fremantle’s Princess May Park is of concern to retailers and residents in the east of the city with some suggesting the corner next to the former Port Cineaste building, where the people sit and drink alcohol should be opened up to Adelaide Street by removing some of the fences that line the park. I don’t believe this is the solution, and removing fences of a heritage listed site might be difficult anyway.

Twenty or so years ago people would sleep under a tree on a church property along St Georges Terrace in Perth. The tree was removed. Did it solve the problem of homeless people needing a place to rest? Of course not! Removing fences at Princess May Park won’t solve the problem either. They’ll move to the other side of the FTI behind the walls there. Remove those as well?

It is up to the W.A. Police to enforce the law. Princess May Park is a known hang out for drunks and that needs to be addressed. A beer bottle was thrown at me from there earlier this year. The shards just missed my legs and I could have been hurt badly. A CCTV camera in that location would alert City officers when the first drinking starts and police will have to attend swiftly to stop it from escalating in fighting and abusive language. Removing fences, walls or trees is only putting a band-aid on the problem.

Roel Loopers


Posted in fremantle by freoview on July 21, 2012

I trained it all the way to the big smoke last night to watch the world premiere of The Fremantle Candidate play produced by Fremantle’s Deckchair Theatre company and played at PICA (Perth Institute of Contemporary Art).

I had not been to a Deckchair production for quite some time as I was too often disappointed in the past, so last eve’s play was a pleasant surprise. The play directed by Chris Bendall and written by Ingle Knight was excellent in my humble opinion and I thought most of the acting was outstanding.

Steve Turner looked the part and almost like a picture of the John Curtin statue at Kings Square and he played the role with great conviction and acting skills.

I did not know much about former Prime Minister John Curtin and learned some things last night, especially his problems with alcohol became a major part of the play, and that alone would be worth seeing the play for, as it was a reminder of how little it takes to get into habitual alcohol consumption, it becomes a routine and then an addiction.

I was told that Deckchair is putting up some matinee performances as well, so Freo people don’t have to come to Perth at night, so hop on the train and see a very good local play.

I noticed Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt and his partner in the audience, as well as the Member for Fremantle Adele Carles,  councillor Jon Strachan, Americas Cup hero John Longley, and former Fremantle Society president Ian Alexander (nursing a broken leg).

Roel Loopers

P.S. check out the alcohol related DRINKTANK blog by FARE.


%d bloggers like this: