Historic Seymour family cottages in Dunsborough

Historical notes on the Seymour family cottages in Dunsborough

The Seymour family were early settlers in the Capes region. William Seymour arrived in Dunsborough 1845-1846 to work for Lionel Sampson and the ‘Castle Rock Whaling Company.’ The Seymour’s two original family dwellings designed in local vernacular style were located on Lots 1 – 17 in Dunn Bay Road, Dunsborough WA, before being relocated to Millbrook Farm at Yallingup. One of the cottages was made from stone and the other weatherboard. Source: City of Busselton Municipal Heritage Inventory 2013.

The Seymour’s family name is shown on the 1902 Lands Department map showing the Locality of the Caves between Capes Naturaliste and Leeuwin in WA.

Image: 1902 map of Capes region with the Seymour’s name in Dunsborough. Image courtesy of State Records Office of WA.

Image: Pre 1980s the Seymour’s stone cottage on Dunn Bay Rd Dunsborough. Image courtesy of the City of Busselton Municipal Heritage Inventory 2013.

Julie Favell (former SW resident): “In 1982 I took these photos of the historic Seymour cottage which used to be located at the end of Dunn Bay Road in Dunsborough just across the road from a car park and boat ramp on the beach.”

Photo: 1982 the Seymour’s weatherboard cottage on Dunn Bay Rd Dunsborough #1. Julie Favell pic.

Photo: 1982 the Seymour’s weatherboard cottage on Dunn Bay Rd Dunsborough #2. Julie Favell pic.

The Seymour’s family dwellings were relocated from Dunsborough to Kevin and Margaret Merifield’s Millbrook Farm at Yallingup in the 1980s.

Kevin Merifield: “My understanding is the Seymour cottages in Dunn Bay road were the first cottages built in Dunsborough around 1850, when Dunsborough was a whaling station.

The historic Seymour cottages were relocated to Millbrook from memory in the early 1980s, we purchased Millbrook at Yallingup in 1976.

At that time Malcolm Paine was operating a tourist business on our property at Millbrook, the Seymour cottages were about to be demolished and we decided to save them and relocate to Millbrook.

Ironically Margaret and I were intrigued when we first came across the cottages around 1958, we knocked on the door to see if we could have a look and Jack Seymour the owner obliged by showing us around and offering a cup of tea, little did we know we would become the proud owners some 25 years later”.

Photo: 2016 the Seymour’s stone cottage on Millbrook Farm at Yallingup. Kevin Merifield pic.

Photo: 2016 the Seymour’s weatherboard cottage on Millbrook Farm at Yallingup. Kevin Merifield pic.

Photo: 2016 the Seymour’s cottages on Millbrook Farm at Yallingup. Kevin Merifield pic.

Left: Stone cottage, Middle: Jack Seymour’s cottage, Right: Weatherboard cottage.

Julie Favell: “I am ever so pleased about the Seymour cottages being relocated to Kevin and Margaret Merifield’s property. It is nice to know someone took the time to preserve a beautiful piece of Dunsborough’s history.”



Living in the South West in the 70s & 80s by Julie Favell

Queensland surfer Mark Favell made his first trip to WA with Jeff Carroll and his brother Steve in the early 70s. The lads settled in the South West at Dunsborough.

Julie Wakefield moved from Queensland to WA in 1973. Initially she lived in Scarborough, but only six weeks after arriving, she moved down South where she met and subsequently married Mark Favell.

These are Julie’s 70s & 80s South West recollections and photos….

In the early 70s we lived at Mark’s dad’s place in Beach Road at Dunsborough with Andy Jones. We all worked at the Dunsborough Bakery.

The house is still there, we checked it out when we visited the South West in 2015.

Photo: Early 1970s Mark’s dad’s house in Dunsborough. Julie Favell pic.

L-R Jack Farrell, unknown, Andy Jones, Mark Favell and Kerri.

This photo was taken around early to mid-70s, it was taken in Dunsborough in one of the many other houses we lived in. North Street I think!

Photo: Mid-70s Julie Favell in North St Dunsborough. Julie Favell pic.

We used to work night shift until dawn in the Dunsborough Bakery then Mark, Andy Jones and Neil Juster would go surfing. In the next shot, ‘Granite’ the dog was named after ‘Granites’ surf break at Noosa Queensland.

Photo: 1973-74 Neil Juster & Mark Favell on Yallingup Beach with Granite the dog. Julie Favell pic.

Photo: 1970s Mark Favell surfing solid Yallingup. Julie Favell pic.

Mark is surfing in the slot on the first wave on the left.

Photos: Early 70s Mark Favell surfing Yallingup. Julie Favell pics

Mark had a 1958 VW Beetle, which from memory was a fully imported vehicle from Europe, supposedly as the story went. I think it was purchased off one of the Vidler boys. Photo does not show the larger tyres we used to drive up the dirt track to Three Bears.

Photo: Mark’s 1958 VW Beetle at Eagle bay. Julie Favell pic.

Photos: 1970s Mark Favell surfing Three Bears. Julie Favell pics.

Photos: 1970s Three Bears surfing pics. Julie Favell pics.

Top left: Peter Wallace. Other surfers unidentified.

Bottom left: small day Bears Bombie with Cape Clairault (Injidup point) in the back ground.

Photo: mid 70s Mark Favell surfing Injidup Car Park. Julie Favell pic.

This surfing shot of Mark is labelled Rocky Point, but it was actually the Farm.

Photo: mid 70s Mark Favell surfing the Farm at Bunker bay. Julie Favell pic.

Photo: 1970s dammed creek behind The Farm surf break at Bunkers Bay. Julie Favell pic.

In the late 70s we managed a property at Eagle Bay on 40 acres which now is an estate. The old house we lived in was up a bit on the hill, with three cottages on the water’s edge, no electricity, kero fridges, kero lamps, wood stove.

Photo: Late 70s our house and Mark’s VW beetle at Eagle Bay. Julie Favell pic.

Photos: Late 70s Views from our house a bit up the hill at Eagle Bay. Julie Favell pics.

Left: view over Geo Bay from our house verandah.

Right: bush walk from our house down to cottages at Eagle Bay.

Photo: Late 1970s one of the cottages at Eagle Bay and Southey the dog. Julie Favell pic.

Jerry and Claire Guinness owned and managed Dunsborough Store/Post Office. Claire also did a Newsletter for Dunsborough for many years. Jerry was a Councillor for Busselton Shire. Mark & I worked for them in the store, on their Eagle Bay property and their farm on Commonage Road.

Photos: Late 70s Guinness property on the hill at Eagle Bay. Julie Favell pic.

Left: view of the only house on the beach at Eagle Bay and Jerry & Claire Guinness’s new home on the hill to the right.

Right: view over Eagle Bay from Guinness property on the hill.

This photo shows Mark with Andrew Jones and his new Ducati motor bike. I think from memory, Andrew had at least two bikes (both Ducati’s) during that period.

Photo: Late 70s Mark Favell and Andrew Jones with his new toy on the Guinness farm Commonage Road Dunsborough. Julie Favell pic.

In the late 70s Mark and I worked at the Dunsborough Bakery and Caves House Hotel.

Goog was still alive then and he was the owner of Caves House. Well it was two brothers, but we never meet the other brother, as he had passed away before I started working there. Caves pub was managed by Wendy & then Em.

I remember at the same time we had offered to purchase the Bakery in Forrestfield from Colin White. Em was going to retire. Not sure how many knew this, but Em approached me to manage Caves House, I was honoured to have been asked, love that place. Sadly I had to decline as we had already agreed to purchase Forrestfield Bakery.

It was a shock to me when visiting Caves House in 2015. The road no longer goes around Caves House anymore, plus all the other additions. Inside the pub was two separate rooms, main bar and lounge, both had separate external entries.

We use to love listening to Nancy and Vance Burrow’s band with lead vocals by Gina Pannone at Caves Hotel sessions.

Circa 1980 Mark & I built a house, which I designed in Chester Way, Dunsborough. It is still there today. This photo was taken in 2015 when I finally got back to visit the SW after all those years.

Photo: 2015 the house Julie designed and built (circa 1980) Chester Way Dunsborough. Julie Favel pic.

Circa 1984 we lived at Smiths Beach on top of hill in a double A frame house which is still there, I checked it out last trip to the SW. It was then owned by Colin and Marion White which was another property we looked after, as Colin and Marion sold Dunsborough Bakery and moved up to Forrestfield as they purchased another Bakery, which eventually Colin sold to us and Dave Dwyer.

Claire Guinness has since passed away, Jerry last I heard, when he dropped in a few years ago was living at Tea Gardens, NSW. Colin White has passed away. Marks Dad is still with us and now lives in England. Mark has one brother Ray lives in Queensland. Marks mother passed away a few years ago (lived in Queensland).

Mark passed away on 5 November 2006. A ceremony (Jeff Carroll did the ceremony) was held at his other favourite beach Mudjimba Beach on the Sunshine Coast and his ashes spread over the ocean by our two sons Adam and Connor. They were joined by many friends forming the traditional surfing circle, equally we sent some ashes to WA where Mark’s Dad John Favell, Andy Jones and a SW crew spread his ashes at Yalls, with an ending note “Eternally surfing East to West”.

Mark and I have two sons. Adam was born in 1983 Busselton Hospital and Connor born in 1990 Nambour Hospital. Adam now lives in Lithgow NSW and Connor did until 2 years ago, but now lives in Scarborough WA.

Photo: Dec 2016 Julie & Mark’s sons Adam & Connor Favell.

Currently I am living just on western edge of Blue Mountains at Lithgow in NSW. I have lived there for 15 years with my husband Chris. We are both involved in the Lithgow Environment Group which was started by us and a few others concerned for the natural areas and coal mining here. The Group had its 10 year anniversary last year.






Old Dunsborough Images

The coastal town of Dunsborough is located on Geographe Bay in the south west of WA. The town consisted of a general store, bakery and a few shacks until the 1950s. It was a sleepy coastal hamlet until surfing became popular in the 60s and wine tourism emerged in the mid-80s.

In 2001 the Dunsborough Writers Group published a book titled ‘Cape of Contrasts’. The book contains of stories of Cape Naturaliste WA and includes recollections and many fine old images of Dunsborough & surrounds. The book is available at the Public Library in Dunsborough.

Click on Your Margaret River Region tourism site to view Dunsborough’s History.

Photo: 1950s Aerial image of Dunsborough Beaches by Alexander Bain. Alexander Bain image courtesy of Brian Cole.

1950s Dunsborough Beaches by Alexander Bain - Brian Cole pic img273

In the 60 & 70s Greenacres Beach Cottages/Caravan Park (located on the Dunsborough beach front) was a popular holiday venue for family holidays and visiting surfers.

Jason Greenacre: – “Greenacres Caravan Park closed in the late 90’s and it wasn’t due to lack of custom as you normally had to book at least a year in advance, it was sold by the people we sold it to for the real estate value as it had absolute beach frontage on the title.” (now strata titled Regency Beach Club).

Mitch Baker: – “My family owned the park upon its closure. The sale date was 25 February 1998.”

Photos: 1964 Surfers holidaying at Greenacres.
Top. (Left) Graeme Ward, Ross James, unknown & Geoff Baxter with surf wagon.(Right) unidentified girl with Ford Zephyr sedan & custom trailer.
Bottom. (Left) Greenacres cottage 2B. (Right) Jenny Tidy & Carol McDonald in mock beheading. Photos courtesy of Ron Moss.

1964 Greenacres Cottages Dunsborough Ron Moss pics 1 collage_photocat

Photos: 1970s Family holidays at Greenacres. Photos courtesy of King family.

1970s Greenacres Cottages Dunsborough J King2a collage_photocat

Photo: 1971 unidentified lady with her bike in front of The Dunsborough Store (located corner of Dunn Bay Road and Naturaliste Terrace). The store sold groceries and petrol & had a public telephone booth outside. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1971 Dunsborough Store - Ric Chan img233.jpg (2)

Photo: 1971 unidentified lady riding her bike through Dunsborough CBD. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1971 Dunsborough - Ric Chan img225

Photo: 1971 unidentified young bloke & Jeff ‘Re’ Marshall riding bikes through Dunsborough. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1971 Dunsborough RE Marshall on bike - R Chan img450

Photo: 1973-4 The Dunsborough Store. Suppliers of groceries, grog & Shell petrol. Photo courtesy of Mark Hills.

1973-74 old dunno General Store - Mark Hills

Surfers moved into Dunsborough in the early 70s. Ron ‘Gremmo’ Ellis, George Simpson & other surfers shared two rental houses on Bay View Crescent with views over Geographe Bay (near the former Greenacres cottages).

Photo: 1975 Surfers and their rental house at Bay View Crescent Dunsborough. Photo courtesy Peter McDonald

1975 Dunsborough Bay View Crescent rear rental house crew - Peter Mac IMG 01

In the mid 70s a Pigbreeders Footy Team was formed in Dunsborough. The team comprised of approx 40 local surfers played against Capel and other teams in the South-West. In 1984/85 surfers Drew Brent-White, Andy Jones & the Bettenay brothers started the Yallingup Mulies Footy Team, which still exists today.

Photo: 1975 The Pigbreeders Footy Team having a shirts & skins training session at the Dunsborough Primary School oval. Photo courtesy of Peter McDonald.

1975 Dunsborough Pig Breeders footy team Skins & Shirts - Peter Mac pic

SW surfers Ralph Redman and Geoff Culmsee ran a Fiberglass business in Clarke Street Dunsborough from 1973 to 2000 . Ralph also ran the Dunsborough Surf Cat hire business in Geographe Bay at the end of Dunn Bay Road during the summer holiday period.

Refer SDS blog ‘The Redman Surfing Dynasty’ published 22 April 2015 for more background on the Redman  family.

Photos: 1976 Dunsborough Surf Cat Hire. Ralph Redman with his children Patrick & Melanie. Photo courtesy of Jill Redman.

1976 Dunsborough surfcat hire Patrick, Ralph & Melanie - Redman pic IMG_01A

The parents of renowned SW surf photographer Jamie Scott ran The Dunsborough Store in the 70s. Jamie took this photo of his dad’s store in 1977 when he was age 7.

Click on Jamie Scott Images to view Jamie’s images of the Margaret River wine and wave region.

Photo: 1977 the Scott’s Dunsborough Store. Photo credit Jamie Scott.

1977 Dunsborough Store. Jamie Scott pic

Photo: 1978 Dunsborough shops L-R Bianca & Kath King. View from front of former Hardware Store in Naturaliste Terrace.  Photo courtesy of King family.

1978 Dunsborough shops Bianca & Kath King IMG_0001

Young surfboard shaper Al Bean moved down south in the early 70s. He shaped surfboards in the SW and sold his boards through metro surf shops.

Photo: 1980 Al Bean promoting his surfboard business in Dunsborough. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1980 Dunsborough Al Bean Surfboards - Ric Chan (3)

In the 80s popular surfboard designer Greg Laurenson ran his surfboard business from an old dairy building located near the present Doctors Surgery in Dunn Bay Road, Dunsborough.

Photo: 1982-3 Greg Laurenson’s Surf Studio in Dunsborough. Photo courtesy of Gary ‘Gooselegs’ Vaughan.

1982-83 Greg Laurenson Surf Studio Dunsborough - Gary Vaughan pic IMG_0003

Creature of Leisure Pty Ltd based their surfing accessories business in Clarke Street Dunsborough in the 80s.

Photo: 1987 Interior of Creatures of Leisure factory in Dunsborough. Photo credit Loz Smith.

1987 Dunsborough Creatures of Leisure factory Clarke St - Loz Smith img291a

In the 1980s Ron Baker ran his H2O Surfboards business in Naturaliste Tce Dunsborough. Dunsborough surfer/shaper Colin Ladhams shaped surfboards for H2O.

Image: 1989 H20 Surfboards advertisement published in Yal Mal Program.

1989 H2O Surfboards advt Yal Mal Prog IMG_0002




Living in Dunsborough in the 70s.

In the 70s SW surfers lived an idyllic country lifestyle on the bay at Dunsborough.

In 1973/74 Andy Jones lived in a house on Beach Road Dunsborough with Mark Favell & Neil Justen. The boys worked in the Dunsborough Bakery. Ralph Redman and Geoff Culmsee lived nearby.

Andy Jones: “I then went over east and surfed Cactus & Bells Beach Vic with Pup, Albie and others. On my return to the SW, I moved in with Gremmo, George Simpson and the crew in Dunsborough from 1975-80.”

Gremmo, George & the crew shared two rental houses on Bay View Crescent with views over Geographe Bay (near the former Greenacres cottages). Gremmo & his wife Ning had the front house and Peter Mac, George Simpson, Ricky Lobe, & Tracy shared the rear house backing onto Thurston Lane.

Photo: 1975 The crew & washing hanging in front of rear house at Dunsborough. Photo courtesy Peter Mac.

1975 Dunsborough Bay View Crescent rear rental house crew - Peter Mac IMG 01

Photo: 1975 the crew in front of Gremmo’s place (Back) Graham Worsley, Horace, Haydn (Front) Grem, Jill, Ning, George Simpson, Suzy Ware, Grem’s dad Ernie holding Grems dog ‘Horse’. Photo courtesy of Peter Mac.

1975 Dunsborough L-R Graham Worsley, Grem, Horace, Haydn, Grems dog Horse, Jill, Ning, Suzy Ware, Grems dad Ernie - P Mac pic

Photo: 1975 Sally Gunter & Ric Lobe out the front of Gremmo’s place. At this time Sally worked in Dunsborough Bakery and Rick worked with her father at Cape Naturaliste lighthouse. Peter Mac’s red ute and John Baldock’s black Falcon are in the background. On the left is Rick’s German Shepherd & on the right is Gremmo’s dog ‘Horse’. Photo courtesy of Peter Mac.

1975 Dunsborough Sally Gunter (Bakery) & Rick Lobe (Lighthouse) Mac's red ute, John Baldock black Falcon Grems dog Horse - Mac pic IMG 02

Photo: 1975 Freshly spray painted cars in the car park of rear house. Blue vehicle unknown, George Simpson’s yellow ute and Rick Lobe’s green VW. Photo courtesy of Peter Mac.

1975 Dunsborough spray job Blue unknown, Yellow George's ute & Green VW Rick Lobe  - P Mac pic

Photo: 1975 New Years Eve party at Gremmo’s place. L-R unknown & Ronnie Ratshit, Mitch & Jen. Photo courtesy of Peter Mac.

1975 Dunsborough Gemmo's NY Party unknown, Ronnie Ratshit & Ian & Jenny Mitchell -  P Mac pic






1976 Craig Bettenay Surfboards

In 1976 top WA surfer/shaper Craig Bettenay and former Victorian Steve ‘Blue’ Nicholson designed and made Craig Bettenay signature surfboards in Blue’s back shed in Dunsborough. The single fin boards were designed for surfing solid SW waves.

Photos: 1976 Steve & Craig displaying some of their surfboard designs in Dunsborough. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1976 Craig Bettenay surfboards IMG_003

Craig: “Blue glassed & finished and I shaped & sanded the surfboards. The boards had hand written signatures on them and were sold Down South and in Perth at Star Surf Shop. It was a ‘Good Happy Vibe’ as Blue was great with good structure and some good boards came out of The Shed.”

Photos: 1976 Craig in the shaping bay at The Shed Dunsborough. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1976 Craig Bettenay Surfboards IMG_005

Photos: 1976 Craig testing his surfboards in solid SW waves. Photos credits Ric Chan.
Top: (Left) Craig surfing Margaret River. (Right) Craig surfing North Point.
Bottom: (Left) Craig surfing North Point. (Right) Craig at Margaret River.

1976 Craig Bettenay Surfboards IMG_007

Craig & Blue went on to design custom surfboards for Cordingley Surfboards in Jolimont WA.

Image: 1976 Craig & Blue in Cordingley Surfboards advt displayed in WASRA Spring Titles Program. Image courtesy of Cordingley Surfboards & WASRA.

1976 WASRA Spring Titles Program Cordingley Surfboards advt IMG_02