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Book remembers a powerful chapter in Perth’s history

Media release

A book released by Curtin University’s publishing arm, Black Swan Press, is shining a new light on one of Perth’s important historical buildings, the East Perth Power Station.

Powering Perth, edited by Perth historian Dr Lenore Layman, tracks the Power Station’s history from construction in 1916 through to its closure 1981 and subsequent plans for redevelopment.

The East Perth Power Station, a building that has sat vacant alongside the Graham Farmer Freeway for three decades, was the first power station in Australia responsible for supplying electricity for an entire metropolitan region.

Dr Layman said the book draws on the memories of those who depended on the Station for work and power.

“The East Perth Power Station lies at the heart of the electrification of Perth and deserves to be recognised and remembered as central to the fabric of life in Perth,” Dr Layman said.

“We gathered the oral history of 130 people, 75 from former workers of the station, as well as former Perth residents.

 “The book also highlights our ever expanding consumption of electricity, and in doing so, reminds us if the environmental limits and the questions of sustainability that face us now in the 21st century.”

For more information, please visit the Black Swan Press website.

About Black Swan Press
Established in 1992, Black Swan Press has published innovative, pioneering and best-selling titles including Jon Stratton’s The Young Ones, June Lacy’s Off-Shears: A History of Western Australian Shearing Sheds and David Black’s In His Own Words: John Curtin’s Speeches and Writings.
The press has also publishes textbooks, histories, memoirs, guides, anthologies of research, bibliographies and other works of scholarship.
Black Swan Press is located in the Humanities at Curtin University.

Gracie Daniel, Public Relations Consultant, Curtin University
Tel: 08 9266 3353, Email:

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