UPDATED 021916 | ADDED 071512 | HIGH WYCOMBE, PERTH, AUSTRALIA [VICINITY ONLY] | HOME | LOCATIONS - LIST - PREVIOUS - NEXT
High Wycombe, Perth, western Australia, Australia [Vicinity Only] | Lat/Long Unknown
Featured Image State Library Of Western Australia Post | Date 1972
Google Maps | Location Not Determined
I have to date been unable to determine the current location [reportedly in a backyard in High Wycombe] of this Futuro and there is no satellite imagery I can find old enough to show it at the Leach Highway/Karel Avenue site. The image below is a screen grab from Google Earth from 121502 and the Futuro is no longer on site as at that date.
Additional Images & Video
Notes, History & Resources
In a recent email Blocker suggested that a Facebook search for the phrase "Lost Perth Spaceship" might produce some interesting results. It certainly did and the photos below all result from that search. The photos all come from posts to the Lost Perth Facebook page that I have missed in the past and I want to thank Lost Perth for providing the forum and all those who shared their photos and recollections [Lost Perth, Lou James, Lesley Thompson]
This first photo from Lou James shows the Futuro in its original location; it is actually a very similar photo to the featured photo above from the State Library Of Western Australia [Facebook post].
This very cool aerial photograph clearly shows the Futuro in its original location [Facebook post].
These next two photos show the Futuro later in life most likely at the Leach Highway/Karel Avenue and Glennon Park locations respectively [Facebook posts here and here].
This is another wonderful old aerial shot this time showing the Futuro during its time at the Leach Highway/Karel Avenue location [Facebook post].
Finally we have a photo shared by Lesley Thompson which shows some old drawings and a press clipping. Hard to make out any detail but very interesting nonetheless [Facebook post].
The photo below is courtesy of the Lost Perth Facebook Page and appears to be a photo of the Futuro at a diffent location to that depicted in all the other photos I have seen of this Futuro.
This very cool photo of this Futuro at its original location shot from the other building that was constructed on the lake was taken by Adrian Butcher's late mother Joan Butcher. The photo is actually a scan from a 35mm slide which Adrian still has.
In a 112413 Post on the Lost Perth Facebook page Catherine Cornish Prins shared this photograph; the only one I have seen of the interior of the Futuro back in its Willeton days.
Stu, who authors the blog Yelpar referenced a couple of times on this page, was kind enough to send me these two photographs of the Futuro as it lies in the back yard in High Wycombe. The pictures are undated.
The four images below are displayed with the permission of the State Library Of Western Australia. The first shows the Futuro as it appeared 090975 in Willeton. The remaining three are additional shots of the Futuro at its original location.
The page Lost Perth is a cool Facebook Reference page where people can post information and photos related to the history of Perth.
Adrian Butcher recently posted the cool photo below showing this Futuro at its original location.
Original Information 071512
Additional Image from 1972 with the permission of the State Library Of Western Australia. This image accompanies a 021409 post in the Skyscraper City Forums which includes a little commentary.
As with the "featured image" above I believe this shows the Futuro at it's original location. There is a suggestion it was at one time located on the corner of Burren Gate and Apsley Rd [Facebook comment by Jodie Porter] before it was moved to the Leach Highway/Karel Avenue site where it spent some 25 years. Jodie Porter was unsure about the actual location and a look at Google maps for the intersection of Burren Gate and Apsley Rd does not show any water or lake in the area that could match the images above so maybe it was at that location at some point maybe not - I cannot be sure.
This image also Skyscraper City Forums Post | Date Unknown
This image is clearly not taken at the "original" location as seen above and I believe this is a shot of the Futuro as it was at the Leach Highway/Karel Avenue site.
The video below by Ethan Marrell, "The Willeton UFO Conspiracy Theory", is a somewhat "tongue in cheek" 2002 look at the "conspiracy" surrounding the disappearance of the Futuro from the Leach Highway/Karel Avenue site.
One thing I have learned over the last several years of building and maintaining this website is that despite my best efforts sometimes I get it wrong and that has turned out to be the case regarding the early locations of this Futuro.
Based on all of the information and photos I have been able to gather I had concluded, despite some reports that it moved only once, that this Futuro had likely moved from its original location to the intersection of Karel Avenue and Leach Highway and then again to Glennon Park.
This week I received an email from Robert Whyte who lived in Willeton for many years. Robert wrote:
"It was only moved the once to the little green triangular Park on the corner of Karel Avenue and Leach Highway ..."
The mention of the park on the corner of Karel Avenue and Leach Highway finally prompted me to "put 2 and 2 together" as I should have done quite some time ago and recognize that Karel Avenue and Leach Highway and Glennon Park were in fact one and the same location. A quick search returned several sites that confirmed this [one example can be found here].
So, to correct my earlier "history", this Futuro was originally located at the Collier Home Expo and then moved to Glennon Park at the intersection of Karel Avenue and Leach Highway. After Glennon Park the details remain as recounted previously on this page.
My thanks to Robert who caused my brain to start to function again!
Facebook hosts many pages where local groups gather together and preserve history and recollections of bygone times in their area. One such page is the Lost Perth page and on 081014 I added the photo at left, found on the Lost Perth page, to this page.
Several of you indicated to me that it looked photoshopped but, given where it came from and the absence of comments suggesting this from "the locals" I concluded that it most likely showed a previously undocumented past location for this Futuro. As are we all I am prone to make mistakes and it is now clear to me that such was the case here.
Being the highly observant human being I am [OK - I lie] I failed to notice the comment accompanying the photo which reads:
"Wouldn't it be great to see it back where we remember it?"
That comment of course clearly suggests the photo is a "creation" and it also explains the lack of comments suggesting that such is the case; obviously those who frequent the Lost Perth page are more observant than I!
My thanks to Blocker who sent me an email pointing out this comment. In the same email he also suggested that a Facebook search for the phrase "Lost Perth Spaceship" might yield some interesting results. It certainly did and at left there are several photos from the Lost Perth page relating to this Futuro that I have missed in the past. My thanks to everyone over at Lost Perth for keeping "their own" Futuros memory alive and kicking.
I recently came across this photo on the Lost Perth Facebook Page which appears to be a photo of this Futuro at a different location than that depicted in all the other photos I have seen of this Futuro.
Almost all of the photos of this Futuro depict it at its original "lake" location and there is little doubt that it started out life there. After that there are various locations mentioned; Karel Avenue and Leach Highway, Aspley Road and Glennon Park. Mention of these locations comes from various sources and the sequence is unclear. Furthermore I cannot quite figure out if the original "lake" location was one of the aforementioned three locations [I have seen references that suggest it was Aspley Road and others that suggest it was Karel Avenue and Leach Highway].
Despite the sometimes conflicting and confusing references what is clear to me is that there were at least three locations based on the photographic evidence. The original "lake" location is illustrated in almost all of the photos I have come across. The other two can be seen in the new photo at left and this State Library Of Western Australia photograph. These two photos, to me at least, show clearly distinct and different locations.
I believe the "new" Lost Perth Facebook Page photo shows the Futuro as it was in Glennon Park [based on nothing more than the fact that it "looks" like a park]. The plaque illustrated below indicates that from Glennon Park the Futuro was donated to the Barking Gecko Theater Company in 1996 and I believe from there it eventually ended up in its current storage location. This suggests that the 1975 State Library Of Western Australia photograph [described as being "Willeton"] depicts a location at which the Futuro was located sometime between its original location and its being moved to Glennon Park; I cannot be certain whether this location was Aspley Road or Karel Avenue and Leach Highway.
However, based on everything I have seen, I think the most likely history of this unit is that it started out at the "lake" location [which I believe is the location described as Aspley Road]. It was then moved to Karel Avenue and Leach Highway [shown in the State Library Of Western Australia photo] and later to Glennon Park [shown in the "new" Lost Perth Facebook Page photo]. Based on the The plaque it was then donated to the Barking Gecko Theater Company and finally came into the possession of the current owner.
As always if you are able to clarify or correct please let me know; you can contact me using the Contact Form or by email.
I still cannot quite get my head around exactly what the sequence of locations was in the early days for this Futuro; though much information is in accord there also seems to be a little conflicting evidence and commentary; in particular about the dates.
The Plaque shown below indicates the Futuro was erected in 1971 and used to advertise the new sub-division of Burrendah. Then in 1971 the unit was moved from this location [Aspley Road] to Glennon Park.
Judy Carroll in her post on the Bring Back The Leach Hwy/Karel Ave Spaceship Facebook Page [Dead - see pdf here] tells us that in 1970:
"It was set over a lake and open on the weekend for inspection. The building behind it was the sales office and the company responsible was Development Underwriting"
and Judy goes on to tell us that:
"After the estate was fully sold the "spaceship" was moved to it's last location on Leach Highway."
Judy also tells us that she was the land sales secretary and responsible for furnishing (with accessories) the Futuro home so her information is based on personal experience which, in my opinion, gives it a great deal of credibility.
The notes that accompany the State Library Of Western Australia images read as follows:
"Futuro House was designed by the Finnish architect, Matti Suuronen in 1968. Ninety six of these plastic spaceship houses were built around the world. The houses were almost 9 metres wide and 3.6 metres high inside. It contained one bedroom, a bathroom, living room complete with fireplace, dining room, kitchen and retractable stairs for easy access to the house. The Futuro House was in Perth as part of the Collier Home Expo. It was built near Karel Avenue and Leach Highway as part of the sales office for the new Burrendah Estate (now Willetton)."
All but one of those images is of the Futuro located adjacent to a lake which would suggest the location was the original one referenced by Judy Carroll but they are dated 1972; the plaque on the other hand suggests the unit was moved from this site in 1971.
Taking all of the various pieces of evidence and after checking out the various locations referred to in Google Maps/Google Earth it seems to me that the photographs dated 1972 are definitely of the unit at its original location. Whether it was erected there in 1970 or 1971 remains unclear.
In 1972 [sorry Judy I know you said 1971 but it was over 40 years ago and the photographs are well documented with original notes on the negative envelopes] it was moved to its second location as shown in the 1975 photograph. Which was of these was Glennon Park, Karel/Leach or Aspley Road I am still not sure [I cannot find Glennon Park and there does not appear to be a lake at Karel/Leach or on Aspley Road; at least not any more] though it seems likely that Aspley Road was the original location and that Karel/Leach was the second; either could have been Glennon Park though I tend to think that was Karel/Leach.
If anyone can clarify please let me know using the Contact Form.
The Australian TV show Today Tonight: 7 Perth aired a feature on this Futuro 082113. A "teaser" video for the show can be found on the Lost Perth Facebook Page [Video can be downloaded here]. In the short video we hear that the Futuro is still located in a back yard and the background to some of the footage suggests it remains in a disassembled state.
I have not been able to find video of the feature online as yet; perhaps it will appear on YouTube - there is a Today Tonight YouTube Channel. I have also contacted the station to see if there is any way to get either a transcript or a video. In the meantime if anyone saw this or knows where the video might be available I would love to hear from you.
The image below is of a plaque commemorating the Futuro that dates the unit as being on various sites in Willeton from 1971 until 1996 when the trail seems to grow a little colder. The image of the plaque is from the Bring Back The Leach Hwy/Karel Ave Spaceship Facebook Page [Dead - see pdf here] and was posted by Geoff Vivian.
In that same group Judy Carroll provides some interesting historical commentary based on her personal recollections:
"Futuro Home - Burren-Dah Estate 1970. The "spaceship" was brought over from NSW on a truck. It was set over a lake and open on the weekend for inspection. The building behind it was the sales office and the company responsible was Development Underwriting. I was the land sales secretary and responsible for furnishing (with accessories) the Futuro home. All the other furniture was built in - ent...irely made of fibreglass. We would have hundreds of people through the home on a weekend and I'm still looking for the person who stole the plastic grapes out of the bowl!! After the estate was fully sold the "spaceship" was moved to it's last location on Leach Highway. The last I heard it was looking very sad stored in some warehouse somewhere......I would love to see it restored to it's former glory."
Though it is the far side of the planet for me I do hope the group is successful; every Futuro deserves to be looked after and above all else "seen". If you happen to be from around Willeton why not hook up with the group; you never know - with enough support anything is possible.
Original information 071512
On a first run through the various reports and websites that discuss this Futuro it seems like it could be included in the list of confirmed Futuros or placed in either the "lost" or "demolished" categories; there are articles online that would support any of those classifications. However when all of the various reports are assessed and then weighted based on reliability [and yes that is my opinion of reliability] I am forced to conclude that this should be classified as a confirmed Futuro that is currently located in a back yard somewhere in High Wycombe, Perth, Australia. If you know differently I would love to hear from you.
What appears to be the best information on the Futuro is posted in the Facebook Group Bring Back The Leach Hwy/Karel Ave Spaceship [Dead - see pdf here]. In particular a comment there by Geoff Vivian includes the text of an article he authored which was published in the Canning Examiner, a local newspaper, 251108. In that article Vivian reports:
In 2010 the Futuro was offered for sale by the current owner in a local newspaper ad. The text of the add went like this: [a scan of the ad can be found here]
"SPACESHIP from Willeton, cnr Leach Highway & Karel Ave, approx 6m dia, needs f/glass repairs $10,000. High Wycombe."
There is no evidence I have been able to find to siggest that a sale has been made and the assumption is the Futuro has not moved and may well be still for sale.
This Furturo has not only been the subject of many internet articles but it has also made a couple of less typical mentions including:
It seems the Futuro is garnering a great deal of interest in the local community and the Facebook Group Bring Back The Leach Hwy/Karel Ave Spaceship [Dead - see pdf here] is pearheading a effort to get the Futuro restored to it's former glory and location. I wish them well in their quest.
Latest Confirmed Date
Today Tonight: 7 Perth trailer on Lost Perth Facebook Page dated 082113
Sources & Reference
Got new, updated or corrected information or an image I could use?
I am always looking for additional information, history, details, images, videos; just about anything Futuro I guess - if you would like to contribute please use the Contact Form or email me directly.
As far as images go I am particularly interested in those that are either significantly better than the ones already on this page or show a different aspect or detail. If you own an image meeting one or both of those criteria I would love to be able to use it on this page but I will simply provide a link if that is your preference. Where permission is granted to use an image on the page appropriate attribution will be provided by means of a link to the original image, a link to a website of your choosing or both.
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