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Wireless Hill Museum

Current Exhibition

Freedom: Stories from Skate Culture WA

At some point in their lives, almost everyone in Australia has stood on a skateboard.

Whether it sits by the door ready to roll, under the bed gathering dust or buried under a pile of boxes in the garage, the skateboard is a ubiquitous object in the average Aussie home.

This summer, the City of Melville will pay homage to that humble symbol of freedom, expression and rebellion – and the subculture it spawned - with a fully immersive exhibition, Freedom: Stories from Skate Culture WA.

Featuring commissioned works by highly regarded WA visual artist Bevan Honey, the exhibition – which runs from Friday, 3 December 2021 to Saturday, 19 February 2022 at Yagan Mia Wireless Hill Park and Museum in Ardross – will turn the spotlight on Perth’s contribution to a cultural revolution and trace local stories, design innovation and artistry from the 1960s to the present day.

From home-made backyard boards to mass produced discount department store rides; from groups of troubled believers to commercial superstars, ‘sidewalk surfing’ has experienced a remarkable evolution – and it’s all captured in Freedom with exhibits and local tales from those who have lived through it.

Freedom Public Program

The exhibition is open Wednesday to Sunday, 10.00am to 4.00pm, from Saturday, 4 December 2021 to Saturday, 19 February 2022. Extended hours where listed.

Saturday, 12 February

Explore the exhibition, open 10.00am to 7.00pm, followed by Melville Summer Music featuring Dan Howls, 5.00pm to 7.00pm.

Saturday, 19 February

Last chance to explore the exhibition and skate in the park, open 10.00am to 7.00pm. Then enjoy Melville Summer Music featuring Lincoln McKinnon & The Wrecking Train and Tanaya Harper, 5.00pm to 7.00pm. Join us for the Closing Night event from 7.30pm - further details revealed closer to the time!

The Museum

The Wireless Hill Museum is situated within Wireless Hill Park in Ardross and hosts regular exhibitions, educational talks, school holiday activities, and a Museum Learning Program.

The Museum building is located within the old Engine Room of the original Wireless Station established in 1912. The Wireless Station was one of Australia’s first links with radio technology, used for telecommunications during World War One and World War Two.

Using Morse Code, the Station communicated with ships off the Australian coast using a mast that was 120 metres (396 feet) tall. In 1968 the Wireless Station was vacated and it is now listed on the Western Australian Register of Heritage Places.

See more information on the historical timeline of the Wireless Station.

Wireless Hill has been a place of communication for thousands of years, as it was previously used by the Noongar Beeliar Aboriginal people as a lookout and a place to send smoke signals.

Opening Hours

Opening hours during exhibitions: Wednesday to Sunday10.00am to 4.00pm

Contact Details

Phone:  08 9364 0158

Email:   museums@melville.wa.gov.au

Postal Address:  Wireless Hill Museum Locked Bag 1, Booragoon, WA 6954

Location

Wireless Hill Museum is in Wireless Hill Park, Telefunken Drive (extending from Almondbury Road), Ardross.

The Wireless Hill Museum Collection

The Wireless Hill Museum collection consists of objects, photographs and documents that relate to telecommunications and the site itself. These include remnants of the Wireless Hill station, Morse Code equipment, electronics, QSL cards, transmitters and receivers.

Some industrial relics such as steel cabling and glass conductor fragments were unearthed during an archaeological site dig near the mast base in 2012. A rare set of plate glass negatives found onsite at the Hickey Street Cottages also form part of the collection.

The Wireless Hill Museum also houses an extensive collection of domestic radios, some of which were manufactured in Western Australia and are very significant to the state's history.

Please note that our collection is not always on display since we often host temporary exhibitions on a variety of themes. Check this page for details of current and upcoming exhibitions.

Search our collections online and view images

Virtual Tours

Past exhibition: SIGNALS, CYPHERS AND STORIES: A Stitched History of Telecommunications

Wireless Hill Museum is proud to present in partnership with Innovative Stitches, an embroidery exhibition in response to the site history of Wireless Hill, and the history of telecommunications

  • Click on or tap the Play button to take a guided tour
  • Navigate around the exhibition at your own pace using your mouse or finger.
  • Float your cursor over (or tap) the white hotspots to see more information in popup windows - videos, photos or text

Past exhibition: Transmission (2020)

The exhibition Transmission celebrated the unique story of the VHF (Very High Frequency) Amateur Radio Club of WA, who have resided onsite at Wireless Hill Park since the 1972. Open the virtual tour (in new window).

Previous Exhibitions

A Centenary of Wireless Hill

Wireless-Hill-Museum-Centenary-Exhibition-(1).jpg

A Centenary of Wireless Hill celebrated the 100th anniversary of Wireless Hill Station in 2012. The Centenary of Wireless Hill exhibition setup took place over 5 days in September 2012, in the lead-up to the Centenary Celebrations.

Home Front / War Front

Wireless-Hill-Museum-Display-Home-Front.jpg

Home Front / War Front explored the significant role that Wireless Hill played in both World Wars, under control of the Australian Navy. The exhibition also looked at the lives of ordinary people in our community of Melville, and how they were touched by the war experience - be it on the front line, or here at home.

Radiosonic!

Radiosonic.jpg

An exhibition held in partnership with the Vintage Gramophone & Wireless Club of WA, Radiosonic! showcased radios and objects from both collections and told the story of the role that Wireless Hill played in the history of this loved form of communication. Radiosonic was accompanied by a series of free Sunday Radio Talks at Wireless Hill Museum.

Botanica

botanica-(1).jpg

John E. Maloney's exhibition Botanica is a collection of fine art photography, bringing to life the beautiful flowers which were first collected in the late 18th and early 19th Centuries around the Australian coast. Botanica was an Art on the Move touring exhibition.

The Wire: A History of Morse Code

The-Wire.jpg

The City of Melville, in partnership with the Morsecodians Fraternity of Western Australia proudly presented The Wire: A History of Morse Code at Wireless Hill Museum. Please view the Exhibition Booklet or flyer for more information.

Machines & Makers

Machines-and-Makers-Exhibition.jpgWireless Hill Museum, in partnership with Art On The Move, presented Machines & Makers − an exhibition displaying a healthy obsession for sewing machines, which captures the extraordinary history of a disruptive technology from the 19th Century that changed the world. Curated by Jude van der Merwe, the exhibition took us through the magic of creating stitch, texture and beauty, and reflects on the disposable clothing culture of the 21st Century.

The twelve artists’ various approaches were broadly grouped into three areas of investigation − the political, social and economic differences made by the inventions, many of which are seen through the lens of memory.

Image: Judith Forrest – Back Stitch: Decorating with needles (detail), 2016, oil on canvas.

50 Years 50 Objects

Wireless-Hill-50-Years-50-Objects-Exhibition.jpg50 Years 50 Objects celebrated the 50th anniversary of the City of Melville, through an eclectic range of objects that were grouped together to tell their own stories, all in some way connected to the Melville story of the past 50 years.

The Picture Palaces of Perth

The glorious age of the picture palaces in the early 20th Century signified an era of opulence, social interaction and entertainment in Perth which changed rapidly alongside an evolving city.

Silent film gave way to the talkies but the theatres remained, and adapted with the times. The Prince of Wales, The Hoyts Regent, The Capitol and The Ambassadors are all fondly remembered in this exhibition which pays tribute to not only the films of the era but also the vibrant architecture of the time.

Proudly curated in partnership with the Pictures in Motion Museum of Film and Television.

Transmission

The exhibition Transmission celebrated the unique story of the VHF (Very High Frequency) Amateur Radio Club of WA, who have resided onsite at Wireless Hill Park since the 1972. Originally known as the Applecross Wireless Station, the site was formally opened in 1912, when telecommunications switched from underwater cable to the mast antenna, signalling the beginning of a new era in radio transmission and telecommunications.

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