The High Street in the port city of Fremantle, Western Australia, is one of the nicest streetscapes in Australia. The row of beautifully restored 19th century buildings has Fremantle Town Hall at one end, and the Round House, which is WA’s oldest building, at the other end.
High Street also has a short but interesting Writers Walk. Fremantle artist, Bridget Norton, has created 2.4m high markers with a quote inscribed on one side from the work of a writer with Fremantle connections.
Five writers are honoured, with the first marker on the corner of Pakenham Street being for Tim Winton, with a quote from his most famous novel Cloudstreet. Winton has never revealed which suburb inspired the location of No. 1 Cloud Street, where the main characters in the book live. Many readers opt for the Perth suburbs of Subiaco or West Leederville, but the Cloudstreet characters do make a brief foray in an old truck to what is obviously Fremantle.
The second marker is for Joan London whose two novels Gilgamesh and The Good Parent have been best sellers, and the last marker is for indigenous writer Kim Scott. Both these writers live or have lived in Fremantle.
In between are markers for John Boyle O’Reilly and Xavier Herbert. More about these two writers in future blog entries.