1960s Fun Times at Mandurah by the King Bros.

In the mid 60s metro surfers used to make day trips from the city to Mandurah chasing waves and fun times.

On the way there were beach break waves at Long Point, Surf Beach, Golden Bay and Singleton in offshore conditions. In Mandurah there were fun waves on sand bars at Halls head & Stewart Street on a SW breeze. Further on there were good waves at Bitumen’s, Miami Bay, Geary’s, Avalon, Melros and Tim’s Thicket.

After a wave, visiting surfers indulged in the local social life. Social activities centred around parties with local girls, Sunday sessions and during the annual Kanyana Carnival there were paddle board races & skurfing displays.

In the 60s Jim & Bruce King of Subiaco were members of the City Beach Surf Riders club.

These are the King Bros recollections of fun times at Mandurah in the 60s with their City Beach surfing mates….

Bruce King – On a surf trip to Mandurah, Phil Henderson and I took a 5 gallon keg of beer in the back of a mate’s Mini-Minor as refreshment for the trip. And we charged our mate for the pleasure of our company on the trip!

Another time Phil and I purchased a 5 gallon keg of beer in Mandurah and got our mate to drive us to a Nightclub in the city & return.

We treated our driver poorly and were dickheads back then!

Photos: 1960s hanging at the beach in Mandurah. Photos courtesy of Trevor Burslem & King Bros.

Top: (Left) Rob Halliday & Sheepdog’s autos (Right) Browneyes, Rob Halliday & Dribbles.

Bottom: (Left) Midge Semple being mischievous (Right) Norm Kitson eating a can of sardines.

1960s Mandurah misc 1 collage_photocat

Bruce KingOn one occasion, my brother Jim and I had a beer with Gerry Humphries and the Loved Ones Band in the front bar of the Old Brighton pub. Later Sheepdog and I (and a horde of others) broke through the fence and into their concert at Mandurah Oval.

Unfortunately, we didn’t get to enjoy the concert as the Constabulary were after us and we had to make a quick get-away in Dennis Baker’s Mini Minor.

Photo: 1960s Main drag in Mandurah with Old Brighton pub in the centre. Photo courtesy of Lost Perth.

Note drinkers sitting on roof of the pub and the stack of Malibu’s on the roof of surf wagon parked in the street.

Photos: 1960s an assortment of surfer’s automobiles made the surfari to Mandurah. Photos courtesy Peter Bothwell, Trevor Burslem, Bull Moss & Ross Utting.

Top: (Left) Rod Bothwell’s broken Prefect (Right) Rob Halliday’s Fiat & Malibu’s.

Bottom: (Left) Norm Kitson & Glen Carroll with Bull Moss’s Morrie Minor. (Right) Ross Utting and Craig Henfry with Ross’s Dad’s EK Holden station wagon.

Jim King – In 1967 the City Beach boys put on a skurfing display at Mandurah’s Kanyana Carnival. We had never done it before, but the organiser’s didn’t know that when they programmed the event! We were towed up & down the river between the traffic bridge and the Peninsular Hotel behind a speedboat on our surf boards. We nearly killed ourselves, but put on a fun show for the crowd. We also competed successfully in the carnival’s Paddle Board Races on the river.

Photos: 1967 Mandurah’s Kanyana Carnival Paddle Board Races. Photos courtesy King Bros.

Top: Paddle Race winners Bruce King & Dave Ellis.

Bottom: Bruce’s Paddle Race Certificate and King Bros Paddle Race prizes.

1967 Mandurah Kanyana carnival 1 collage_photocat

Jim KingWhen the wind was onshore in the city and there was a good swell running, we used to drive down to Mandurah and surf fun Malibu waves at Stewart St and Halls Head. Unfortunately these sand bars disappeared when man made developments occurred at the river mouth.

Images: 1966 surfing fun waves at Stewart St Mandurah in a SW breeze. Images ex CBSR Super 8 movie film.

Top: (Left) Jim King & Rob Halliday tandem (Right) Ron Moss head stand.

Bottom: Browneyes walking the board.

1966 Surfing Stewart St collage_photocat

Photos: 1960s social times at Mandurah. Photos Courtesy of Glen Carroll, Trevor Burslem, Robyn McDonald & Ron Moss.

Top: (Left) Glen Carrol with flower power board (Right) five wise men L-R Jim King, Rob Farris, Norm Bateman, Steve Cockburn & Bruce King.

Bottom: (Left) Robyn Mac & friends (Right) Mick & Ron Moss socialising.

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Jim King – In the 60s you were allowed to drive your car on the beach at Long Point & Surf Beach. We parked near the best waves, bogged our cars on high tide and had great fun towel surfing on the water’s edge behind Kevin ‘Dirty Odes’ O’Dwyer’s work ute.

Images: 1960s autos & people at Surf Beach. Images ex CBSR Super 8 movie film.

Top: (Left) Rob Halliday’s Fiat & Jim King’s Anglia parked on the beach. (Right) Robert ‘Digger’ Dolphin being dacked by Phil Henderson.

Middle: (Left) Phil Henderson towel surfing on his mum’s best beach towel behind Dirty Ode’s work ute (Right) Peter ‘Dyso’ Dyson & Greg (Pant’s) Laurenson leaving the waves.

Bottom: Dirty Ode’s work ute loaded to the gunnels with surfboards.

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Bruce King – When the waves were flat or wind was howling onshore, we would play on a rope swing on the Murray River near Pinjarra while waiting for the afternoon session to start at the Ravenswood pub.

Photos: 1968 River swing on Murray River near Pinjarra. Photos courtesy of King Bros.

Top: (Left) Norm Kitson on rope swing (Right) Phil Henderson dropping in on Bruce King.

Bottom: Bottoms up.

1967 Pinjarra river swing 1 collage_photocat

We were young and they were fun times!





1970s Rotto fly-in surf trip

In the 70s the Rottnest Island Board (RIB) flew Independent Newspaper photo journalist Ric Chan and some of his surfing mates to Rottnest for a photo shoot to promote surfing on the Island.

RIB financed the plane trip and provided a vehicle & accommodation for the weekend photo shoot.

Ric’s surf team consisted of Bruce King, Phil Henderson, Steve Cockburn and Mark Johnson. The boys enjoyed the Island’s hospitality.

These are boy’s recollections.

Bruce King

I remember on the flight over the pilot wanted to turn back because he reckoned it was too windy, we persuaded him and eventually landed, once on the ground we were treated like movie stars, transport provided not quite 5 star limo, but an old service truck, we were given a cabin for overnight stay, all this supplied by way of Ric Chan’s smooth talking. There was a horse hire place then, which Ric persuaded the owners to let us avail ourselves with the promise of exposure in the “Independent” newspaper.

We scored well with waves, at that time we didn’t know if others had surfed some of the places, I’m sure they would have. One surf break was Strickland Bay which Ric called King’s Reef because I was the first one out. Another was Chicken Reef which I think Sheepdog named because Ric was too chicken to go out, I think it is still called that today.

Phil Henderson

It’s funny but YEAH that trip was a bit of a blur. I remember it was blowing its box off and we had to convince the pilot to land in such a bad crosswind. He was not happy but we made it. Cannot remember much else other than Ric’s photos. It was good fun though.

Steve Cockburn

Ric Chan arranged our venture to Rottnest Island. Flying from Perth to Rottnest was ok, but when our light aircraft attempted landing, with the extremely strong wind, the plane was blown sideways at an angle to the runway making it unsafe to complete the landing, so the pilot aborted that first landing attempt and circled to try landing a second time, which was successful.

We made our way to the Rottnest Island Board Offices and Ric went off to discuss some marketing that the Board wanted done, they had lent us the old truck (as seen in the photos) and we all soon headed to the south side of the Island. The surf was flattish, blown right out by really strong north to north west winds.

I don’t remember much about the surfin, but on the second day we decided to go horse riding and hired horses at the local stables then headed off to the north side of Rottnest and along sand tracks leading out to the West End near the lighthouse. The horses were stubborn and it was hard to get going, even to get them to canter on the way out, but as soon as we were returning towards their stables they all bolted and went uncontrollable in full gallop towards their home. My horse suddenly swerved to the right when we arrived at a fork in the track. I was flung off the saddle and swung around the under horses neck, with both legs wrapped tightly around its neck, the horse came to a stop and I walked it the last short distance to the stables.

When it was time to return to Perth, we thought we may get stuck on the Island due to the still very strong wind and the possibility the plane not being able to land and pick us up. But when the time came the pilot made a safe landing and soon we were off back home.

Ric Chan

Muhahahaha. The only reason in know I was there is the pics. Maybe we can wangle another wagon, a boat and a weekend over there.

Photos: 1970’s aerial snaps of Rotto Island. Ric pics

1970s aerial snaps of Rotto Ric Chan

Photos: 1970s fly-in to Rotto airport. Ric pics.

Top: Bruce & Phil unloading surfboards.
Bottom: Sheepdog collecting luggage & the boys playing footy at the airport.

1970s rotto fly-in airport Ric Chan

The RIB provided the boys with an old ex-military truck to drive around the island in.

Photos: 1970s Island transport. Ric pics.

1970s Rotto island transport Ric Chan

Photos: 1970s surfing Strickland Bay (aka King’s Reef). Ric Pics

Top: Bruce King take-off & Mark Johnson.
Middle: Phil Henderson & Bruce King.
Bottom: Sheepdog x 2.

1970s Rotto surfing Kings Reef Ric Chan

Photos: 1970s surfing Chicken Reef.

Top: Chicken Reef line-up and the boys on surf watch.
Middle: Sheepdog & Mark Johnson.
Bottom: Bruce King & Phil Henderson

1970s Rotto surfing Chicken Reef Ric Chan

Photos: 1970s horse riding. Ric pics.

Top: Phil Henderson. Bottom: Steve Cockburn & Bruce King.

1970s Rotto horse riding Ric Chan

The Rottnest Island Authority is now creating an interpretative sign and short DVD on the importance of Rottnest to the surfing community, to be installed on Rottnest Island WA. They plan to use some of Ric Chan’s 1970-80s Rottnest based historic images for their interpretation products.



1960-80s Eye Candy

Surfing became an acceptable trendy pastime during the 60s. All types of Commerce were using surfers to promote their products. Photos of surfers featured in Fashion & Surf Mags and News media advertisements/promotions.

Some WA surfers were lucky enough to exploit their good looks on the meat market and supplement their meagre incomes through fashion photo-shoots and by strutting their stuff on the catwalk.

Photos: Flashback to the 60s. Photos courtesy of Brian Cole, Gayle Franks and Greg Woodwood.

(Left) 1961 Brian Cole & legendary big wave surfer Bob Pike modelling for Flair Magazine at North Narrabeen NSW. (Middle) Gayle ‘Copper’ Franks modelling on City Beach for ‘Broken Glass on the Beach’ campaign. (Right) Surf Magazine photo shoot featuring Eleanor Proud.

1960s models, Brian Cole, Gayle Franks, Eleanor Proud collage_photocat

During the 70s WA surf industry pioneer Len Dibben ran his own Surfboard manufacturing business and did modelling on the side initially to promote his surfboard business. Len also got WA champion board paddler/surfer Dave Ellis and some of his Warrain Board Club mates to join him modelling on the catwalk. Click on this link for more details of Len Dibben’s modelling career.

In 1972 photographer journalist Ric Chan did a fashion photo shoot with Len Dibben in the SW .

Photos: 1972 SW fashion photo shoot. (Left) Injidup Point surf wear photo shoot. (Right) Gracetown car park. Len modelling the latest head wear from Walsh’s Men’s Wear in Perth city. Photo credits Ric Chan.

1972 SW photo shoot Len Dibben collage_photocat

In 1973 Bruce King from Subiaco was holidaying in London with his WA surfing mates Bob Monkman, Micko Gracie & Peter McDonald. While there Bruce was employed to tour major cities in England & Wales promoting Viking Model Sewing Machines for Husqvarna Ltd.

Photos: 1973 Modelling Viking outfits in London. (Left) Igor (Vic) and Bruce King (WA). (Right) Bruce King decked out in viking apparel. Photos courtesy of Bruce King

1973 Bruce King LOndon Viking Sewing Machine photoshoot 3 collage_photocat

In the 70s photo journalist Ric Chan did a photo shoot for a jewellery advertisement in Perth. It featured Yallingup surfer Peter McDonald and model Cheryl Marrat.

Photos: 1970s Perth. Peter Mac & Cheryl Marrat modelling jewellery. Photo credits Ric Chan.

1970s Peter Mac & Cheryl Marrat jewellery photoshoot collage_photocat

Fashion photo shoots by photo journalist Ric Chan.

Photos: (Left) 1970s model Jane Priest, unidentified & surfer Bunky Miller with dog. (Right) 1969 unidentified model & Ric Chan modelling a wettie in South Australia.

1969-70s Ric Chan photoshoots 2 collage_photocat

Phil Henderson was a talented City Beach goofy footer and a good looking young buck back in the 70s.

Photos: (Left) 1972 Phil surfing in Blaxell Surfboards advertisement. (Right) 1973 unidentified model with Phil Henderson & his dog at City Beach photo shoot. Photo credits Ric Chan.

1972-3 Phil Henderson photoshoots collage_photocat

Business advertisements in WA’s West Coast Surfer magazine.

Images: (Left) 1980 Graham Noakes advertising his Margaret River business. (Right) 1980 Frank Thorson (Mitch’s dad) advertising his Rottnest Bakery. Images courtesy of Ric Chan.1970-80 photoshoot Graham Noakes & Frank Thorson IMG_001

Photos: (Left) 1973 Sandy & Norm Bateman modelling wetsuits for Oceans Surf Shop. (Right) 1975 Dave Kennedy (dec’d) from Star Surfboards in Perth City. Photos courtesy of Ric Chan.

1973-5 Norm Bateman & Dave Kennedy collage_photocat

In the 70s & 80s Ric Chan was busy juggling his career activities. During the day he worked as a photo journalist for The Independent Newspaper and as a professional model. At night time he was a DJ at Gobbles night club.

Photos: 1976 Jeans advertisements Perth. Ric Chan and unidentified girls modelling the latest jeans & accessories. Photos courtesy of Ric Chan.

1976 Jeans West advts Ric Chan 5 collage_photocat

Paul Mienk was a talented City Beach surfer & skate boarder in the early 60s. He was good looking and popular with girls.

Photo: Late 1970s Paul Mienk modelling a leather jacket in Bali. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1970 Bali Paul Mienk modelling leather jacket IMG_0410

In the 70s Trigg/Mettams surfer Steve ‘Hog’ Hannett featured in fashion photo shoots.

Photo: 1977 L-R Unidentified, Colin Earle & Steve Hannett at the Hang Ten WASRA School Boys Contest at Trigg. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1977 Trigg Hang Ten WASRA School Boys Surfing Championships Colin Earle & Steve Hannett - Ric Chan 009

Cottesloe surfer Bill Oddy was head honcho at Cordingley Surfboards and a guru in the Entertainment industry during the 70s. Bill was also a popular male model in WA.

Photo: 1977 Bill Oddy at the Hang Ten WASRA School Boys Contest at Trigg. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1977 Trigg Hang Ten WASRA School Boys Surfing Championships Bill Oddy - Ric Chan 014

WA surfer Gary Greirson became a professional TV model in the 80s and earned big $’s advertising Beer & Electrical goods in TV advertisements. Gary worked for a modelling agency and his fashion shots appeared in magazines & newspapers.

Photos: 1980s Gary Greirson fashion photo shoots. Photos courtesy of Gary Greirson and Bill Plowman from the Daily News.

Gary: “These were just work shots for which I was well paid. I don’t have any pics of when I was on the catwalk. I did a high paid TV commercial for Emu Export beer in 1984, but have no photos as it’s on video tape”.

1980s Gary Greirson Modelling 1 collage_photocat

In the 80s Californian pro-windsurfer & top surfer Rich Myers (Yallingup resident since 1990) was introduced to modelling through his windsurfing exposure in the USA. His image was featured in various US Magazines & Newspapers, covers, pictures, interviews & editorials.

He became a member of the Screen Actors Guild and appeared in TV commercials and had bit parts in ‘The Young & the Restless’, ‘The A-Team’ & T J Hooker TV series. He was the feature surfer in surf movies ‘Follow the Sun 11’ and ‘Tales of the 7 Seas’. Rich also featured in windsurfing videos.

Photos:  1980s pro-windsurfer Rich Myers featured in a Malibu Men Calendar. Image courtesy of Rich Myers.

Rich: “While the calendar wasn’t a big hit with the girls, it was very popular with the Gay community in San Francisco” (-:

1980s Malibu Men calendar Rich Myers collage_photocat

Photos: 1980s Rich Myers windsurfing & fashion photo shoots. Photos courtesy of Ric Myers.1980s Rich Myers modelling 6 collage_photocat - Copy

In 2006 ‘Outside Go’ Magazine featured SW surfer & yoga teacher Kathleen ‘Katie’ Coryell in an article on female athletes. At the time Katie she was a sponsored surfer with Surf Diva and was sent out to do a lot of projects like this one.

Photo: 2006 Katie Coryell image in Outside Go Magazine. Photo courtesy of Katie and Outside Go magazine.

2006 Kathleen Coryell Outside Go Magazine IMG_5480y




1970s Surfing Transit Reef at Rotto

In the early 70s surf photographer Ric Chan accompanied members of the Greg ‘Pants’ Laurenson surf team on a day trip to Rotto.  Ric took water pics from a tinnie of team riders John Balgarnie (Cottesloe) and Phil Henderson (City Beach) surfing Transit Reef .

Photo: 1970s John Balgarnie & Greg Laurenson photo shoot on Rotto. Photo credit Ric Chan.

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Photo: 1970s John Balgarnie surfing left at Transit. Photo credit Ric Chan

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Photo: 1970s John Balgarnie cuttie at Transit. Photo credit Ric Chan.

1970s Rotto Transit Reef John Balgarnie Ric Chan 013

Photo: 1970s John Balgarnie doing a spinner at Transit. Photo credit Ric Chan

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Photo: 1970s John Balgarnie smiling for camera at Transit. Photo credit Ric Chan

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Photo: 1970s Phil Henderson surf left at Transit. Photo credit Ric Chan

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Photo: 1970s Phil Henderson cuttie at Transit. Photo Ric Chan.

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Photo: 1970s Phil Henderson cuttie at Transit. Photo credit Ric Chan.

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In the 70s WA Surfboard/Boat Manufacturer Tom Blaxell raced his 4.3m Surfrider power boats offshore.

Tom Blaxell: “I still hold the record for the most offshore power boat racing wins in WA. By co-incidence inaugural State Surfing Champion Alex ‘Zac’ Kochanowitcz has one of the Surfrider boats I built down south at the old North End Board Riders property at Prevelly.

Photo: 1975 Blaxell Surfrider power boat jumping waves at Transits. Tom Blaxell is behind the wheel with Trigg surfer Paul Cunningham in the back seat. Photo Credit Ric Chan.

1975 Rotto Blaxell Surfrider jumping waves at Transits Tom & Paul Cunningham in the back - Ric Chan IMG_0410


1960s Browneyes Part 2 of 2

Part 2. 1968 Whisky a Go-Go surf trip.
City Beach Surf Riders club members Phil Henderson, Bruce ‘Lumpy’ King and Kevin ‘Mumbles’ Rumble recall joining Brian ‘Browneyes’ Mawby-Brown on a 1968 overland surf trip to the Eastern States.
The boys travelled in a brightly painted FJ Holden promoting the Club’s sponsor Whisky a Go-Go nightclub. As befitting four young blokes travelling in an orange coloured FJ Holden the boys got up to a fair bit of mischief. Coincidently they left Perth on the same day as competitors in the inaugural London to Sydney Marathon Car Rally. Spectators cheered the boys & their sponsored FJ through Perth and WA country towns assuming they were part of the rally. All went well until the FJ broke down for the first time in Merredin. Head mechanic Mumbles fixed the FJ overnight and the boys continued their trip across the Nullarbor. There were few fuel stops on route and one night they got lucky, pulled in fueled up then went looking for someone to pay and couldn’t find anybody, front , back or inside so lucky them, they drove off into the night.
The car had broken down so many times they had become quite proficient as a team at pulling the car apart and putting it back together again. One notable time somewhere out near Whyalla in South Australia the car stripped a timing gear, they pulled into the nearest petrol station to be told they had the parts, but couldn’t fix it for a couple of days. That’s all right they said “we’ll fix it”, so they proceeded to pull it apart as they each had their own job where Phil and Lumpy would open up the front, pulling out the grill, radiator and everything in the way for Mumbles and Browneyes to do their mechanical thing. The casual way this was done got the locals convinced that the boys had no idea and the car would never go again. Once repairs had been finished the car was re-assembled and all the spare tyres and surfboards packed on top without trying to start it. The locals couldn’t help themselves, so a bet was conceived that it wouldn’t go (they thought our boys were dumb and didn’t know how to line up the timing dotes). The boys accepted it on the proviso that the car would be push started and it would go first time. It did start and the boys drove straight around to the main entrance of the gas station put their hand out, got the money and got the hell out of there.
They went on to surf good waves in South Australia & Victoria. While at Phillip Island (Vic) they re-painted (with a brush) the orange car a less conspicuous light blue colour. As no masking tape was available the tyres and accessories were painted too. The repaint come unstuck when a fresh afternoon breeze came up and coated the car in grass seeds, dirt and insects (very Harry Butler).
After several more repairs on the trip from Phillip Island to Sydney the FJ was nursed onto Ulladulla in NSW where it expired for the final time. The boys travelled onto Manly in Sydney and surfed up and down the east coast before making their own way back to Perth.

1968 the Whisky a Go-Go sponsored FJ Holden on the Floreat groyne prior to the boys’ departure. Photo credit Bruce King.

1968 Whisky a Go-Go FJ Holden on Floreat Groyne - Bruce King pic

The photos below are (left) 1965 Browneyes and the boys in front of City Beach Tea Rooms. (standing) L-R. Kevin O’Dwyer, Jim King, Phil Henderson, Browneyes, Bruce King & Alan Cleaver. (sitting) Dave Kennedy. Photo credit Norm Bateman. (right) 1967 Browneyes, Rob Halliday and Peter ‘Dribbles’ Collett in beach car park at Mandurah. Photo credit Jim King.

1960s Browneyes compilation #2