South Fremantle, Western Australia

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South Fremantle
PerthWestern Australia
South Fremantle Power Station.jpg
South Fremantle Power Station
South Fremantle is located in Perth
South Fremantle
South Fremantle
Coordinates32°04′26″S 115°45′14″E / 32.074°S 115.754°E / -32.074; 115.754Coordinates: 32°04′26″S 115°45′14″E / 32.074°S 115.754°E / -32.074; 115.754
Population2,794 (2006 census)[1]
LGA(s)City of Fremantle
State electorate(s)Fremantle
Federal Division(s)Fremantle
Suburbs around South Fremantle:
Indian Ocean Fremantle Fremantle
Indian Ocean South Fremantle Beaconsfield
Indian Ocean North Coogee Hamilton Hill

South Fremantle is a suburb of Perth, Western Australia, located within the City of Fremantle.


The first development in the area may have been when Richard Goldsmith Meares established a lime-burning kiln in 1831. Meares had arrived at the Swan River Colony with Thomas Peel in the previous year.[2]

As the area was adjacent to the relatively safe harbour of Owen's Anchorage in Cockburn Sound, the area began to be used as an alternative destination point for ship arrivals.

In 1898, a railway was built from Fremantle to Robb Jetty.[3] At that time, an abattoir was built for slaughter of livestock arriving from the north-west of the state including the Kimberley Region. Livestock were unloaded from the ships onto a jetty. Extensive pasturing for the animals as well as small market gardens were established in the region around the abattoir.

The Coogee Hotel was built in 1901, and in 1903 the railway was extended to Woodman Point. Commercial lime kilns were established during this period to provide for the construction boom and population growth which had been brought about by gold discoveries.

The area steadily became the centre of much of Perth's heavy industry and comprised the coal-fired power station, railway marshalling yards, abattoir as well as numerous skin drying sheds. From the 1980s however, pressures brought on by demands for residential housing triggered a process of removal of the various facilities.

South Beach[edit]

South Beach, Fremantle

South Beach is an area of beach and adjacent land in South Fremantle. The beach and the disused railway station are parts of the South Fremantle community history.[4][5][6]

Industrial heritage[edit]

Area of the old marshalling yards

Railway marshalling yards[edit]

A large marshalling yard with signal box tower was built by Western Australian Government Railways in the 1960s during the standard gauge railway line project from Kalgoorlie to Leighton

The yard was decommissioned in the Westrail era in the 1990s.

Robb Jetty Abattoir[edit]

Known variously as Robb Jetty, Robbs Jetty and Robb's Jetty, the abattoir grew out of a complex of private meatworks established in the late 19th century, including Forrest, Emanuel & Company and Connor, Doherty & Durack.[7] In 1921 the Fremantle Freezing Works began operation as one of the three State Government regulated abattoirs under the 1909 Abattoir Act.[8]

The abattoir was closed in 1994; the jetty itself was previously dismantled in the 1960s. The chimney is the only remaining part of the large complex of buildings which included offices, holding yards, freezer and chiller facilities. The chimney is listed in the State Register of Heritage Places.[9]

Cattle being unloaded from a ship at Robb Jetty in the 1920s. Livestock were shipped from the Kimberley.

Public transport[edit]

South Fremantle is serviced by bus routes 511, 530, 531, 532, 533, 548, 549, 998, 999 and the Fremantle Central Area Transit (CAT).[10]


  1. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "South Fremantle (State Suburb)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 5 October 2008.
  2. ^ "Assessment documentation – Three Lime Kilns, Cockburn" (PDF). Heritage Council of Western Australia. Retrieved 2 February 2007.
  3. ^ Gunzburg, Adrian; Austin, Jeff (2008). "Table Construction of the W.A Government Railways network, 1879–1931". Rails through the Bush: Timber and Firewood Tramways and Railway Contractors of Western Australia. Perth, Western Australia: Rail Heritage WA. pp. 208–210. ISBN 978-0-9803922-2-7. OL 12330925W.
  4. ^ "South Beach, Fremantle". The Daily News. XXXVI (13, 092). Western Australia. 27 January 1917. p. 11 (Third Edition). Retrieved 17 January 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  5. ^ "South Beach, Fremantle". Truth (298). Western Australia. 13 March 1909. p. 3 (City Edition). Retrieved 17 January 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  6. ^ "South Beach, Fremantle". The Daily News. XXX (11, 118) (Third ed.). Western Australia. 30 January 1911. p. 8. Retrieved 17 January 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  7. ^ "Interim Heritage Listing for Robb Jetty chimney". Media Statements. Government of Western Australia. 23 August 1996. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
  8. ^ "1909 Abattoirs Act". Western Australian Legislation. Department of the Premier and Cabinet. 4 December 1909. Retrieved 26 February 2015.
  9. ^ "Assessment documentation – Robb's Jetty chimney" (PDF). Heritage Council of Western Australia. Retrieved 2 February 2007.
  10. ^ Transperth web site