Fremantle Lockout

Australian Workers Film Guide


A grassroots documentary covering events at Fremantle’s Webb Dock in Western Australia during the tumultuous 1998 Patrick Dispute from the perspective of those on the MUA picket line.

The film records the union’s strategy of peaceful resistance in the face of repeated assaults by management and police to break the picket, which included a detachment of 800 police, the largest ever deployed in Western Australia. Extensive media attention sees the protest grow into a large scale community picket, requiring support systems. The Women of the Waterfront is formed.  Federal Opposition leader Kim Beazley attends and speaks in support of the picketers. Court decisions ordering the reinstatement of the MUA workers are followed by celebrations on the picket line.  Triumphantly demanding access to their worksite, management is forced to open the gates to MUA workers ready to start their shift.

Special Notes/Achievements

Author: J Bird, 2023

Duration: 23 mins

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Film Editor: Roland Smith, Gerard Simmons,

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