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Browsing Archive: March, 2015

Perth buskers are a colourful bunch

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, March 30, 2015,
One thing I've noticed since returning from Sydney a few years ago is just how many buskers and street performers there are in Perth. Even taking into account the city's significant increase in population, there do seem to be an awful lot of them! When it comes to busking this city seems to punch above its weight -- much like it does for that other mode of self expression, street art.

Granted, many of them are not that good. And some of them are just excruciating. But some are extremely accomp...
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Bon Marche building sadly scarred by graffiti

Posted by Matt Hayden on Saturday, March 28, 2015,
There's a lot of aesthetically pleasing street art in Perth these days -- most of it done with the owners' blessing, I suspect. But there's still too much ugly, stupid "tagging" going on as well. That's depressing on any structure. But it's particularly so when it's inflicted on a beautiful old architectural creation. Sadly, this is what's happened to the Bon Marche building recently. 

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Army surplus stores in Wellington St have been there for ages

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, March 26, 2015,
New construction in the CBD continues apace. You don't have to walk far within the city proper before you see a building site. This is good news in many ways, of course. But it can also be disconcerting -- even a bit depressing -- because some buildings that held sentimental value are just no more. 

But there are still pockets of Perth that seem untouched. Hopefully they will remain this way for quite some time. 

One example is the corner of Wellington and Pier Streets in the city. On that corn...
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Ben Cousins' sad decline continues

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, March 25, 2015,
Ben Cousins has been in the news again lately. This time he wound up being arrested after some bizarre behaviour near a temple in Canning Vale.

A lot of people find his mental problems a bit of a laugh. Check out some of the comment threads on Facebook page updates by news sites and you'll see what I mean. But I think his protracted fall from grace is terribly sad

Clearly drugs have played a huge part in this ongoing tragedy. Meth has clearly damaged his mind severely and it seems permanently...
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The Bassendean Hotel

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 24, 2015,
There are many differences between the general atmosphere of Perth and Sydney. Perhaps the biggest relates to the relative amount of space in each city. Perth is far more spread out, giving it a more relaxed feel.

Another big difference: pubs. If you're anywhere near the Sydney CBD, there seems to be a charming old pub on every corner. In Perth they are comparatively few and far between. They're here of course. You just have to look for them.

One of the few Perth hotels that has that comfortabl...
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St Denis Catholic Church in Joondanna

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 24, 2015,
As I mentioned in a previous post I've really started noticing churches around Perth. Their function makes them distinctive, of course. Then there's the fact that they aren't overly numerous. Then there's the care that's gone into their construction. Several of them are quite distinctive architecturally also.

Take the St Denis Catholic Church in Joondanna. It has an unusual curved roof that is very noticeable when seen from the side. 

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North Fremantle Fallen Soldiers War Memorial

Posted by Matt Hayden on Monday, March 23, 2015,
For those keen to get a sense of West Australian history there's a war memorial worth seeing in North Fremantle. Built to honour the fallen of that suburb it is located on Queen Victoria St. It is surrounded by some elegant old buildings including an antique store that enhance its solemn atmosphere. You'll see it if you're driving into Freo from the north.

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The Clanville's Building in East Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, March 22, 2015,
As I mentioned before, Fremantle proper probably has the highest concentration of historic architecture in the entire metropolitan area. But there are isolated gems in neighbouring suburbs such as East Fremantle.

The Clanville's Building is a good example. It's on Canning Highway, just near the water, not far from and opposite the well known Tradewinds Hotel.

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Greens now focusing intensely on cyclist safety

Posted by Matt Hayden on Friday, March 20, 2015,
One thing that you can be sure of with the Greens and other far left parties is that they don't just lack common sense. They seem to be diametrically opposed to it. This is related to their deep sense of their own moral virtue. They sincerely see themselves as more sensitive and compassionate than the rest of us. So they are always on the lookout for issues they can take the high moral ground on, wringing their hands and wagging their fingers and shrieking: "Look at us! Look at how much we ca...
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St Christopher's Anglican Church, Bicton

Posted by Matt Hayden on Sunday, March 15, 2015,
The city's oldest buildings have become much more noticeable to me as I walk through areas where they are most concentrated, such as the CBD and Fremantle. When I'm in the suburbs, however, the buildings that catch my eye tend to be churches.

I'm not sure why this is the case, since I'm an atheist. And I don't think I'll sign up for any of the big faiths any time soon. Perhaps it's because I'm becoming more aware of my mortality, or something ... 

In any case, here's one I saw in the southern ...
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"A Better Cycling Future" won't help McGowan's chances

Posted by Matt Hayden on Thursday, March 12, 2015,
Mark McGowan seems like a decent, intelligent and competent bloke. But I think he's got a tin ear politically, or he gets some very bad advice, or both. He hasn't managed to articulate a clear, cohesive and principled strategy in opposition. His tactic seems to be to try and woo special interest groups with a beef against Colin Barnett and his party in the hope that the numbers will add up to a sum great enough to get him over the line.

I saw him speaking at an anti-shark-cull rally once. That...
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The Charles Building in Queen St Fremantle

Posted by Matt Hayden on Wednesday, March 11, 2015,
Fremantle is renowned for its architectural history. There are numerous old building in the port city, with most of them being concentrated near its west end around High St. But there are many individual structures that have clearly been around a very long while indeed. 

Take the Charles Building at 55 Queen St. It houses the business premises of fashion designer Megan Salmon. It's long caught my eye as I've travelled by bus into Freo. So I walked past and took these shots of it recently. 

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Junaid Thorne shows extent of radical Islam's influence

Posted by Matt Hayden on Tuesday, March 10, 2015,
Controversial Islamic preacher Junaid Thorne has just had his Twitter account suspended for a third and final time. Considering how much content actually gets let through, this says a lot.

And this isn't the only restriction placed on his freedom

Self-proclaimed Islamic sheik Junaid Thorne and two of his associates have been banned from applying for passports and travelling overseas.

Thorne, Mostafa Shiddiquzzaman and Omer Abdirahman Issak appeared in Perth Magistrates Court on Friday, accused...

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Good books about and set in Perth and Fremantle
Line of Sight
When War Came to Fremantle
The Devil's Garden
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