Fremantle: A heritage walking tour with Mike Lefroy


16 October - 13 December 2022 | 10am 

Arrival from 9.30am to allow for morning break

Start time can be adjusted on request



Humanities and Social Sciences

Year Level
Year 4 - 6
60-120 minutes

$240 per class (maximum 32 students per class)

Legendary Fremantle storyteller and historian Mike Lefroy (Museums Without Walls) has a wealth of maritime stories to share about Fremantle.

Immerse your students in the spectacular panoramic views of Fremantle on display in the Fremantle Then & Now exhibition as Mike brings them to life with great stories. These fascinating images are taken from various high points around Fremantle between 1879 and 2017. The earliest panoramas featured give a glimpse of everyday life in Fremantle before the money from gold transformed the streetscapes. 

Then take students on a walking journey into local heritage as Mike brings the past into the present with surprising stories of Fremantle city, the port and the waters of the Derbarl Yerrigan (Swan River). 

A descendant of CY O'Connor, Mike has extensive experience as an educator and heritage communicator. His knowledge and research into Fremantle history has contributed to the stories featured in the Fremantle Then & Now exhibition. Mike will frame this walking tour experience within the curriculum focus of a variety of year groups, so grab your walking shoes and explore the heritage features of this unique location. 

At the Museum

What your class will experience

This program includes a 60 minute walking tour and a self guided visit to the Fremantle Then and Now exhibition and Maritime Museum galleries (allow 30 - 60 mins). Students participating in the program (one or two classes*) will experience:

Introduction (Temporary Exhibition Gallery)

An exhibition introduction with Mike Lefroy, where he activates the themes of continuity and change and key themes in the photographic landscape of Fremantle

Part A: Exhibition Self-guided Exploration (Temporary Exhibition Gallery) 

  • Explore the Fremantle Then & Now exhibition panoramas
  • Consider the significance of the limestone rockbar (visible as an element in the earliest photographic panorama) at the mouth of the Derbarl Yerrigan (Swan River) to Whadjuk Nyoongar people.
  • Learn about the Aboriginal heritage of Walyalup, and explore the historic panoramas of Fremantle, and key exhibition themes about cameras and early photography, convicts, the goldrush, the port, early life in Fremantle, and Fremantle cultures of celebration
  • Reflect on everyday life in the colony as shown from the earliest panorama taken in 1891 
  • Engage with touchscreen interactives and heritage film resources to bring historic Fremantle to life.

Part B: Walking Tour of Fremantle (External tour of Fremantle's West End, departing from WA Maritime Museum)

  • Consider the working port environment and the importance of maritime trade to the development of Fremantle and Western Australia
  • Explore the legacy and complex story of C.Y. O'Connor in the development of Fremantle harbour 
  • Discuss the motivations for coming, challenges, achievements and contributions of key colonial settlers and later migrants
  • Explore physical traces of heritage in Fremantle's landscape and built environment through key themes: coastal changes over time; the legacy of convict labour and contributions; and the development of Fremantle's built heritage through the goldrush era
  • Discuss the stories and significance of key elements in the built landscape such as the Roundhouse    
  • Discuss the significance of key settler families such as the Samsons, Moores, Highams and Batemans - in the story of change and development in Fremantle from first settlement to the early 1900s.
  • This part is led by Mike Lefroy

As Victoria Quay is part of Fremantle Ports you can view their emergency plan here

This is a walking tour program, so please ensure that students are dressed appropriately for weather conditions and bring sunscreen, hats and drink bottles as required.

*To request information on how to schedule and arrange a visit for 3 classes, please let us know and we can assist you.