Report - East Perth Power Station, Perth, Western Australia - Dec 2017

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28DL Regular User
Regular User
Jul 10, 2014
East Perth Parsons

The usual consensus here with international industrial sites is that no one cares because it isn't British heritage or history, and I can understand that because there really is something about English industrial heritage, it's something unique to the world and it's examples are not only diminishing and getting rarer, but forever increasingly beautiful. And if I'm entirely honest wandering around something like a derelict french steel plant versus that English monster up North is an entirely different experience. Instead of looking for the nitty gritty bits of heritage and detailing, it becomes more of a relaxed walkabout, taking time to make your pictures a bit nicer, less looking into the history and what it once was. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with that and I love it just as much, it's just Schneider in France was a dramatically different experience to Iron Bridge you know?
So you can imagine, I'm the other side of the world and the last thing I expected to find in an old derp power station on the Swan river was 2 cream Parson turbines with matching alternators right from the heart of UK industry. I mean in retrospect looking at Australian history it obviously makes sense but none the less it was an amazing surprise to see looking down from the gantry! And to imagine these have been sitting still since 1981, and in the condition they're in. Some people will call me a bit weird but personally that's quite amazing.
Unfortunately for me as a younger generation of exploring and joining the hobby late I was yet to see a Parson in situ, so this really added to the experience when I thought I was just having a little look round what seemed to be a ruined derp. So have a few pics and read up on some interesting history. This is by no means the first explorer of this places s it has been rinsed but there's not much on here other than a few externals. The future of the works are a little uncertain but the council are fighting to keep them as pieces of Australian history, they're pretty rare in the world let alone the small city of Perth. Enjoy!

A History of East Perth Power Station


An old picture of the power station before the extension and newer machinery

he Power Station was constructed between 1913 and 1916 by the Western Australian State Government, which announced that the facility would generate all the electricity needed in the Perth Metropolitan area. The site of East Perth was chosen because coal could easily be delivered there by rail and because the enormous quantities of cooling water required by the condensing plant could easily be drawn from the Swan River. Construction was completed at a total cost of £538,000. The Power Station consisted of two buildings containing three power stations. The second building still embellishes the art deco style of the times. The A Station commenced generation in 1916 and was expanded in 1922 and 1928. It is believed that the building was designed in England by engineering consultants Merz & McLellan and contractor Babcock & Wilcox. Most of the building materials were imported including the cement. The B station was commissioned in 1938 followed by C station in 1956. The A station had a total capacity of 32 MW while B and C stations had of a capacity of 25mw and 30mw respectively. The first building of the power station housed A station and was designed prior to World War I and construction commenced in 1913. It later housed C station. The B station was designed c.1934 with Art Deco features and is the most recognised of the buildings. The central power station building was used to house plant and equipment and contained the boiler house, turbine room, switch house and pump house. Jetty #1 and Jetty #2 were constructed along the Swan River in the 1920's. Water was pumped from the river, filtered through screens to remove jellyfish & other river debris before being circulated through a condensing plant (located in the power station) where it cooled steam in the condensers. Jetty #1 no longer exists. By 1948 the station had an array of power generating sources and in 1968 the station converted from coal to oil, but six years later returned to coal firing. Later in it's life the power station used it's ash to be send for farming to feed plants and was used all over the city.


More recent machinery in action

The station was decommissioned and closed in December 1981, as more advanced and cheaper methods of electricity generation made the facility redundant.
The East Perth Power Station is considered to be one of the State's most significant industrial heritage buildings. It includes a range of remnant machinery and equipment that is believed to be unique in the world because it contains the five different stages of power generation technology that occurred in the 20th century.

Throughout the past 35 years plans have been past and failed for it's regeneration and redevelopment. last year in February the site was divided up for sale and hopeful the building sees a new lease of life.


Recently on another derelict power station in Perth (South Fremantle) a teenager fatally fell and as such most of the derelict buildings in Perth were sealed up, however that never lasts long and with a bit of thinking this was still doable. Obviously...

Pics aren't the best but I can't be bothered to edit and preferred to just enjoy it rather than compose a nice picture.




















Hope you enjoyed anyway! Thanks for looking. :)​