Four kilometres south of Fremantle, lies the abandoned South Fremantle Power Station. Looking desolate and unkept, it is not the sort of place I would normally venture into…. until I heard the building was covered in street art.
The South Fremantle Power station supplied power to the metropolitan area for thirty four years from 1951 to 1985. The site was chosen as it was close to the city, the nearby railway lines could deliver the coal and salt water for cooling was also close by. The area around the station became a centre for heavy industry. Coal fuelled the station until 1954 when oil took over, however it returned to being coal powered in the seventies. Since 1985, it has stood untouched. Development is taking place in the nearby old industrial area but there is still no news as to the fate of the power station.
In the meantime, street artists have taken over the Power Station.
As we approached the fenced off building, I thought our trip had been in vain but I spotted a hole in the fence. Ignoring the warning signs, I climbed through. Hubby was about twenty paces behind….a great help!!
The building is in ruin.Not a pane of glass remains in the window frames and graffiti covers most of the outside of the building.
The inside surprises me. A soft filtered light streams into the huge cavernous interior creating a warm glow. Rows of steel beams stretch from one side to the other and high above, small walkways create another level. Street art and graffiti blend into each other covering every inch of space. Despite the debris around us, I find it quite beautiful.
An open doorway on the side of the building leads to another large hall.
The South Fremantle Power Station really is a magnificent building. Thankfully it is heritage listed which stops it from being demolished. I hope that, when a decision is made as to its future, it will be sympathetically restored.
What could you see the power station being used for?
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