Born and bred

“This was the most vibrant town. They came from Wollongong and Shellharbour to shop in Port Kembla, and yet there was that stigma of living here. We didn’t understand what a brothel was as kids, and there were brothels inside the buildings, because it was a seaman’s port. This is where the ships came in, this is where the men would look for women. This wasn’t something that was publicised or we knew about but outsiders knew and they probably passed comment and used the brothels. There were more brothels in Wollongong but it was us, Port, that got the name for being that type of suburb. We had cottages close to the works for the working men, we had a migrant hostel – there was always that cheap line of accommodation so we were looked down on. Until this day, we are still looked down on. Even in the good times we were looked down on so I’ve always known this and realised that we have a stigma here in port Kembla but to me it doesn’t mean a thing because I know differently. Those of us who are born and bred in Port Kembla, who have lived our lives here, I know how proud we are.”

Dulcie Dal Molin, Red Point Artists