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05 - Leighton Beach Bush History.jpg

Leighton Beach Bush History

A concrete directing station was located on the hill, on the opposite side of Stirling Highway from the Leighton Battery. It is located approximately 22m east of the fence line that borders the existing Fremantle train line, the fence as seen in the above banner photo.


Its location sits on a 1.22 acre (4,955 m²) block of land, which is known as Lot 287, Stirling Highway and almost nothing else can be found about this site nor the facility itself - both specifically and generally. The above ground square building of approximately 4m x 4m, which also contained a basement level, appears to have (typically) been demolished around 1991-1992.

The two Coastal Artillery Search Lights (No.4 and No.5) located on Mosman Beach, were directed by this station on the hill. The search lights formed the eyes of the battery during the hours of darkness with a number of them located between Fremantle and Swanbourne and were in existence between 1942 until the end of World War 2.


Interestingly, a 1950 map titled "Proposed Re Allocation of Artillery Barracks - Leighton to 10 Coy (Loy?) RAASC" shows that both CASLs were attached by way of a pipeline to three ERs. I haven't been able to find or work out the abbreviation for these but No.4 CASL was directly connected to No.4 ER with the connecting pipe going under Cable Street by the beach. No.5 CASL was also connected to No.5 ER via a pipeline that went under Ocean Road with the ER located some distance inland in close proximity to the railway line. The pipeline for No.6 ER begins somewhere underneath Ocean Road, though closer to No.5 CASL than No.4 but doesn't connect to anything marked on the map. The pipeline emerges halfway to the railway line before heading back under Ocean Road in a triangle formation, reappearing briefly south in the bend of Ocean Road and then reappearing again on the inland side of Ocean Road into what is marked No.6 ER on and over the road.

The generators for the searchlights were located in close proximity to them and seems quite doubtful they would be marked as an ER, let alone with a pipeline.

The bunker under Vlamingh Landing (where there is little to no acknowledgement of this) was temporarily used to ensure the continuity of the cable state during the WW2 years but the cable pipes do not follow this direction and instead, go out to sea. The south side of what is now known as the McCall Centre and possibly forming part of the Beehive Montessori School's property, was the council's sewerage plant and also wouldn't appear to have these pipelines emerging from that site.

Interestingly, a second building of approximately 5m x 2.5m, was located some16m north of the directing station and perhaps it was nothing more than an ablution block. It was demolished by 1979.

A suspect shape appearing to be a building some 50% times bigger than the concrete directing station, can be seen further south until just after 1961 when it was demolished. Fast forwarding satellite imagery to 1970 and the location of this anomaly, had it been some sort of building, is nothing short of suss when viewing the terrain on its northern side.

01 - August 2022