Don’t confuse having a career with having a life” Hillary Rodham Clinton

I have been thinking a bit about work life balance this week, as I think many of us have been thinking during these COVID times. It may also be because I am moving house this week, combined with a Board meeting, sold out Chamber event tonight, one next week at Freo.Social and the usual carry-ons of life!

In my pondering I have come to the conclusion that we are just so lucky to do business in Fremantle. A walk down High St for an early morning coffee, driving in past ships loading at the Port and even being in a beautiful historic building with fresh air and natural light makes getting the balance between work and life so much easier.

Our sold out Transforming Heritage Spaces event tonight, hosted by Chamber members RSM and Frichot Lawyers, with guest speaker developer Gerard O’Brien, is another great example of the opportunity we have here to create heritage modern work spaces that inspire and delight.

The Indigenous art around every corner of the Frichot Lawyers fit out combined with exposed brick, high ceilings, metal frames and balcony views out to Market St, and also straight up High St to the Round House, bring together a modern space that would be just at home in New York city as downtown Fremantle. For those who of you have visited Frichot & Frichot of old, it is hard to believe the transformation – it feels so much brighter and even the staff seem to have extra bounce in their step in this impressive space.

One of our key comments in the Chamber’s response to the City of Fremantle’s West End Heritage Policy draft was to be more responsive to the way our spaces are used – particularly to challenge the traditional model of retail on the first floor and upper stories for non-active uses. We firmly believe the focus should be on creating interest and movement and activating our streets and buildings as the absolute priority in assessment.

On activating spaces – our Small Business & Retail Committee have worked hard to put forward a case of a creative idea to activate some of our empty shop fronts. We are so pleased to announce that the City of Fremantle have formally included this idea on their list of COVID-19 Recovery Plan strategies. We are working closely with the City’s Economic Development team, our attraction businesses, our property developers and property owners, as well as our small retail businesses to bring this project to life later in the year.

Another great example of a creative and innovative approach to creating spaces is in the approval of Chamber Member Megara’s ‘Home Store’ concept for 240 South Terrace. Bringing together the ultimate principles in work life balance, they have brought a unique product to market giving purchases the option to establish an affordable working from home opportunity, within a retail environment. The 2 x ground floor retail spaces are being converted to function as a combination of a residential apartment inclusive of a winter garden and a small retail store in 1.

Finally, I am very much looking forward to hearing from our panel at our Perth Advertising and Design Club collaboration next Wednesday 23 September. One week to go to hear from the incredible line up of speakers, including the irreverent and irrepressible Lucy Peach. I am looking forward to exploring with the panel how they get the balance right in following a career in music and sound that is all about the passion, and how they convert this passion to a commercial offering, and what may or may not get lost in the process.

Bookings for this event through:


PADC and FCC member tickets are free, and $15+bf for guests, with first drink free and nibbles provided by Freo.Social.


I am very much looking forward to both of our events this week, and getting through to the other side to be surrounded by packing boxes again in my new home – motivated to appreciate the work-life balance achievable by choosing to do business in Fremantle.

You can read more tips on work life balance in our Chamber Weekly update here.