Electoral district of Alfred Cove

Alfred Cove was an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly of Western Australia. It was located in Perth's southern suburbs, and named after the riverside suburb of Alfred Cove.

Alfred Cove
Western AustraliaLegislative Assembly
StateWestern Australia
Dates current1996–2017
NamesakeAlfred Cove
Area16 km2 (6.2 sq mi)
DemographicSouth Metropolitan


Alfred Cove was created at the 1994 redistribution, created out of the northern riverside portions of the former seats of Applecross and part of Melville,[1] and was first contested in the 1996 election at which Liberal member and Court government minister Doug Shave, who had previously represented Melville since the 1989 election, was successful.[2] Alfred Cove, and Applecross before it, was regarded as very safe for the Liberal Party, but an Independent Liberal, Penny Hearne, who had formerly represented the Liberals against Kim Beazley in Brand at the previous federal election, had cut Shave's margin to just over 2%.

As Minister for Fair Trading, Shave was criticised over his department's handling of the so-called finance brokers' scandal in 1999–2000, where thousands of elderly investors faced losses estimated at over A$200 million. In particular, Shave was accused of giving preferential treatment to his own father-in-law to recover $100,000.[3] The electorate at the 2001 census, taken shortly after the elections, had a median age of 40 and 28.7% of its population were over 55 years of age, and hence was unusually affected by the consequences of the finance brokers' scandal.[4] The candidates at the 2001 election included Denise Brailey, an advocate for the elderly investors, and Dr Janet Woollard, the wife of former Australian Medical Association president Dr Keith Woollard who had started the Liberals for Forests party.[5] In the event, with Labor not contesting, each got over 20% of the vote, with Woollard winning on preferences when Brailey and the Greens were eliminated and their votes distributed.[6]

Woollard faced a strong opponent at the 2005 election in Liberal candidate and former Court government minister Graham Kierath, who had unexpectedly lost his seat of Riverton at the 2001 election on a 10% swing to the Labor Party. Despite Kierath winning on primary votes, Woollard once again won on preferences. Despite Woollard's presence, Alfred Cove remained a comfortably safe Liberal seat in "traditional" two-party match-ups with Labor, and it was a foregone conclusion that it would revert to the Liberals once she retired. Woollard did not contest the 2013 election and, as expected, Dean Nalder easily reclaimed the seat for the Liberals.

Alfred Cove was abolished in a redistribution in 2015, with effect from the 2017 state election. Its territory was distributed between Bateman and Bicton (a new seat), with Dean Nalder (the sitting member) winning preselection for Bateman.[7]


Alfred Cove was ranked amongst the highest electorates by socio-economic status in Western Australia according to the SEIFA indexes, with high scores on educational and employment opportunity. At the 2006 census, the median individual income in the Alfred Cove electorate, based on its 2005 boundaries, was $577 per week compared to $513 in the Perth metropolitan area, and the median weekly household income was $1,166 compared to $1,086 across Perth, although these figures did not reflect retirees with high asset bases. 46.2% of the working population were professionals or managers. 30.3% of Alfred Cove's residents were over 55—the highest percentage of any State electorate—and had a median age of 41 years.[8]

Members for Alfred CoveEdit

Member Party Term
  Doug Shave Liberal 1996–2001
  Dr Janet Woollard Independent 2001–2013
  Dean Nalder Liberal 2013–2017

Election resultsEdit

2013 Western Australian state election: Alfred Cove[9]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Dean Nalder 13,523 64.4 +19.4
Labor David Houston 3,532 16.8 –3.2
Independent Janet Woollard 2,114 10.1 –13.3
Greens Ros Harman 1,665 7.9 –2.0
Estelle Gom 161 0.8 +0.8
Total formal votes 20,995 95.2 –0.7
Informal votes 1,047 4.8 +0.7
Turnout 22,042 91.4
Two-party-preferred result
Liberal Dean Nalder 15,445 73.6 +23.8
Labor David Houston 5,544 26.4 +26.4
Liberal gain from Independent Swing N/A


  1. ^ "Electoral Distributions Act 1947 – Division of the State into Six Electoral Regions and 57 Electoral Districts by the Electoral Distribution Commissioners". Western Australia Government Gazette. 28 November 1994. p. 1994:6135–6327.
  2. ^ Black, David; Prescott, Valerie (1997). Election statistics, Legislative Assembly of Western Australia, 1890–1996. Perth: Parliamentary History Project and Western Australian Electoral Commission. p. 10. ISBN 0-7309-8409-5.
  3. ^ "Finance brokers scandal hampers Court's re-election chances". The 7.30 Report (ABC). 27 June 2000. Archived from the original on 29 March 2005. Retrieved 8 August 2008.
  4. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (19 November 2002). "Community Profile Series : Alfred Cove (State Electoral District)". 2001 Census of Population and Housing. Retrieved 8 August 2008.
  5. ^ "WA politicians desperate to capture voter attention in close election". The 7.30 Report (ABC). 8 February 2001. Archived from the original on 21 September 2011. Retrieved 8 August 2008.
  6. ^ Western Australian Electoral Commission (12 March 2001). "District of Alfred Cove Results". Retrieved 8 August 2008.[dead link]
  7. ^ 2015 Final Boundaries by Region and District, Western Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 2 February 2017.
  8. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Community Profile Series : Alfred Cove (South Metropolitan) (State Electoral Division)". 2006 Census of Population and Housing. Retrieved 5 August 2008.
    * Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Community Profile Series : Perth (Statistical Division)". 2006 Census of Population and Housing. Retrieved 5 August 2008.
  9. ^ "Alfred Cove District Results". Western Australian Electoral Commission. Archived from the original on 12 April 2013. Retrieved 19 April 2013.