Bathers Bay is a small beach immediately south of Arthur Head. It is about as historically important to European WA as any place can be, being where Captain Fremantle landed 8 October 1829 to 'take possession' of the western part of the continent. The first people, the Whadjuk, called it Manjaree.
Bathers Beach from Arthurs Head, my photo
As is generally known, Fremantle derived its name from Captain Charles H. Fremantle, of H.M.S. Challenger, which anchored off Garden Island on April 25, 1829, three years after Major Lockyer had founded the settlement at Albany. Captain Fremantle landed on Arthur’s Head, and on May 2 took formal possession in the name of His Majesty King George IV. The exact spot where he landed was indicated in a despatch to the Admiralty dated October 8, 1829, wherein he said that:
The landing took place in a little bay close to the mouth of the river, to the southward of it, being the only landing in that neighbourhood where boats could go with security, the bar at the entrance of the river generally being impassable.
No doubt that little bay would have been the indentation in the shore between Arthur's Head and the little promontory (Anglesea Point) from which the Long jetty was later constructed. The landing would have been made somewhere near the western end of where later a tunnel was made through the rocky head, and it was there that the first jetty was situated. Hitchcock: 9-10.
The former Fishermens Cooperative building, now Bathers Beach House. It has a licence at the western end to serve alcohol on the beach on a bit of privatised land.
People's Ocean Knowledge Trail of Cockburn Sound & Districts
Garry Gillard | New: 27 April, 2016 | Now: 2 June, 2018