The Block Gatwick Episode Two

Before we get into tonight's episode (What's in the Safe and Who's Getting What Apartment) thanks for the interaction from Blog One! Especially:

Thanks to the keen eye of Mark who identified exactly what I couldn't, thinking they were possibly driving in Balaclava, turns out it was good old Chaps!


And my favourite of the night, from Twitter, because I love spotting a spelling error more than life itself:


Night Two here we go!

How to recap the recap… Ha! Oh that’s right Hayden and Sara are locked in. And only ten minutes to go! *Duh Duh Duuuuuuh*

Think I'm going to have a great Redbubble tshirt line by the end of the season, as Sara threatens "SCREW THAT AND LEAVE ME ALONE". I think it's a statement that can work away from the show and on several levels.

Things going wrong, people being snippy oooh and it’s only day one. These people are going to crack it earlier than most seasons.

Ha, how fresh and sprightly does Scotty look walking up the stairs and into position.

Tools down

Tools down

Everyone covered in paint and disdain, Courtney and Hans give themselves a fair appraisal, Bianca and Carla too, “We nailed that” ok Sara, just so you know: being humble isn’t a weakness or a flaw. I wish I had as much self confidence! No I don't.

Oh that's right, Spence decided to pull out big guns early, that ceiling is amazing and in fact the whole room. Oh god I’m not crying - you’re crying! SO MUCH DUST Kerrie and Spence.

Sheesh another room and more blubs! Good support though Jess. “You were amazing” Norm, not thinking “Yeah, I know” lulz. Clearly these guys are firming as everyone's favourites.

YAY the judges! HA how’s the rent-a-crowd (plus dog) for their entrance. 



Dapper Neale Whitaker?  Sure but what about Shaynna Blaze's skirt and Heidi hair?! Oh and Hi Darren.

Spending $7820 ambitious Kerrie and Spence have a rather large horsey pic, in their "simple and elegant for a 12-14 year old girl" room. Who must like horses... Horses, horses, horses, horses, Coming in in all directions, Do you know how to pony like bony maroney. Sorry I digress, apologies to Patti Smith.

"It's like coming into fairyland" a strong start from the judges, the ceiling is paying off. Colour pallette in keeping with the building. And even the chennile (I refuse to learn how to spell it) is getting props wow ok.

Scotty warns no one wants to hear the but. Shaynna’s bored with nothing on the wall at the end of the bed. Not a kids’ room. Fair call.

Ah St Kilda Festival! Always in February it's the day the streets are packed with thousands of people from all over town, and dudes dressed like nuns apparently, and when most locals going into lock-down. You will get the best people watching spot from the Gatty and constant access to dunnies always important to have that contingency at any festival wherever it is.

A Gatwick view of Fitzroy Street early on St Kilda Festival Sunday

A Gatwick view of Fitzroy Street early on St Kilda Festival Sunday

Reveals continue with Hayden and Sara. Oh that’s right they waited til the next morning to clear their stuff out, controversial. Woah and spent $10,776. What’s modern lux? Ok judges are happy with the kid element, fun and lovely feel. Especially the "niche" (wtf is a niche isn't it a book nook?). Bed spot clever. Space for toys and play. Skirting issue and a bit near the desk is noted as a fault, but that’s being quite harsh surely given the time frame etc.

B&C sinking $7278 into theirs. Oh yes dark ceiling this will be interesting… I always wanted a black ceiling with those glow stars when I was a kid. Oh that’s right the busted lamp, at least the judges are acknowledging that. A play room too. Clever. Ooh I have those types of walls in my place! La-di-da. Hahaha, Darren notices a climb out of the window issue with their junk box. Oops!  But Shaynna c'mon do you have to have every surface covered, can’t they put their own stuff up in the spaces on the wall like I did with my posters from Smash Hits?

Norm and Jess very frugal with a $5464 spend. It's a Princess room… My bed when I was a kid had draws under it – brilliant - I kept my Duracell bunny in one of them. OH panic room… damn editors last night I thought it was going to be the locked door room. Bed under the window dangerous and illegal. Surprised that as parents Norm and Jess didn’t pick that up…

Courtney and Hans second most expensive room with $8411. They devised a vibe of travel adventure, for a braniac kid. "Detective or medium…" yeah Hans, not sure how those two compare but at least it's non gender specific. That cloud ceiling is really great! Oh dear the bubbling and the shelving is being picked on by the judges especially the 'crude' floating shelves. Geeze another bench seat compliance issue.

So the only people that can win is Hayden and Sara, effectively, with all the non compliance. Damn, potentially they really did nail it.

Uch ad break.

As expected, they were compliant. *yay*

The all important Apartment selection time arrives

Hayden and Sara are taking apartment 3… hang on more bickering...they haven’t discussed it!? Sheesh. So that’s at the back towards Middle Park and faces east (aka - not the water). 

As an apartment dweller, not hearing people walking above is a major, major factor. How is it that a coin can sound like a bowling ball when dropped above your head onto floorboards.

Kerrie and Spence next, makes sense. Oooh they’re going with the safe apartment! Underneath H & S.

B & C look relieved. YES Penthouse number five! Great choice - back of the block, it will have water and city views surely.

Norm and Jess they were gunning for fifth place and got fourth so that's a great achievement. Penthouse living for the Queenslanders, unreal, how infectious is their enthusiasm! So that one faces Fitzroy Street, which will get nice morning light and provide amazing people watching.

Apartment two ooh the biggest apartment for Courtney and Hans, interesting so it's a last but not least arrangement.

Took this pic in April wondering what the numbers meant... I figured but now confirmed

Took this pic in April wondering what the numbers meant... I figured but now confirmed

WHAAAAAT PLOT TWIST Hayden and Sara get to steal their kid's room reno money back by taking it from other contestants? That’s just mean and nasty, Scotty. And announces that the main bathroom is the first challenge. Gee whiz. Guess it's the most important room in a house

Finally everyone goes through their new spaces, I love the enthusiasm Jess and Norm have, it’s too cute. At the risk of repeating myself 100% firming as everyone's favourites, surely.

*Fanfare* Here we go, safe reveal time…


ka ching ka ching ka ching Spence you are correct saying your $150,000 + worth of goodies is a "game changer", well done!

Gosh and they're decisive - suggesting to the current leaders Hayden and Sara the money be taken from them. That’s extraordinary. No piss off Sara why do you need to know. Just accept their very generous offer. Oh sorry Spence, you're a stand up bloke, as you were.

Now it’s show time Keith and Dan are in the house!


Jess sucking up to them early, good ploy.

Fa crying out loud, Bianca – FIX YA HELMET 


Ooh grumpy peeps in Apartment 2. Courtney crying… what about… oh nooo their Builder has quit. Ah well that’s construction for you. Good advice Dan… just go shopping

A 2.5m Japanese Maple inside a bathroom. Really Jess? Are they known to be indoor plants?

Yes! I love these issues where one apartment impinges on other’s bulkheads and whatnots


I think Hans just lost his lunch, so not only do they not have a builder but Norm and Jess could be affecting anything they'd already thought of. Good luck with that one...

Hayden and Sara are on the Tiles.

Elsewhere the netty team go off to source a 450kg feature wall!? Don’t hold back B&C, guess it *is* the penthouse with the city and bay views, so painted MDF ain't gonna cut it. LOL now you think about the practicalities of how to get it in. This has got crane written all over it, luckily you’re on the roof and you don’t have any rooms yet…

Fitting at least four product placements into a two minute space, the bathroom supplies are now being perused for Courtney, Hans, (or is that Hayden and Sara I really need them to wear their hardhats at all times for the first couple of eps while I work out who's who) and Kerrie and Spence:

Errm, Kerrie and Spence are just flaunting their extra wealth! Ewwwwwww the squirty toilet, no just no I cannot. Can't. That would take a lot to get used to


Ooh the wood vanity, so warm. Good eye Kerrie, I never really think of wood for bathrooms. Except a sauna.

Meanwhile I sense a big issue brewing, Sara's not having much luck with her husband I couldn’t live with that indecision. 


Get it together Hayden. Tipping you've seen that look a few times

And just like that, you've dithered for too long H and you didn't get your vanity, but it will look great in Kerrie and Spence's apartment who nabbed the last one before you could. Sucked in.

Ha, here's that Sara stare again, tipping we'll see a few of these over the coming weeks!


Woah she's told her husband Hayden to get out of the shop and go be constructive back at the Gatty. And things get on a roll for stare bear Sare. Jess is going it alone too to pick out some tile stuff to help with an idea of grandeur. 

More visual overlays - City view from West Beach, tick; People cavorting on the bike paths in Elwood, tick; The docks? tick (I guess); more cavorting, tick; a boardwalk I'm not familiar with but guess it's Port Melbourne, tick!

Storyline progression time, great news guys Courtney and Hans might have a builder! But god I hate when people try to have phone calls like this (I know they probably have to do it for tv production purposes but if I see anyone doing this in real life I feel like tipping sand on them)


Time for the end of day one summation - oh no don't piss of the foremen kids, but Keith stop with your high standards of Day One dropping sheets or piling up beams or whatever it was you said, but Dan backed you up so who am I to judge.

Hang on so watching the promo for what might be happening tomorrow there's too much to process - someone's waving incense sticks around, there's another couple in life jackets, people are being told they might have to get out and Sara's demanding money from Bianca and Carla. AND a Face Off with Dan. Surely that cannot all be tomorrow night!? 

Same bat time, same bat channel I guess... see you then.

The Block Gatwick Episode One

Ok, too excited I might cry, my first recap of the greatest season of The Block ever...

Aw look, St Kilda! You so pretty! Good move filming in the height of Summer when the hood really 'POPS'

"It’s an Uber cool bayside suburb…" duh Scotty. We know that. But welcome. We’re very happy to have you. Grab a beer with him if you see him around, he's a good egg.

"My mum always said to me that if you're going to buy real estate, buy the worst house on the best street. So I found the best street - Fitzroy Street - and then I found the worst house. Well, hotel actually..."  Aw the poor Gatty… Read my first post for links to a great video about what the hotel meant to people.

The Gatty Construction Begins

The Gatty Construction Begins

Yep ok, explainer about the construction, all the preparation work, blah blah bring us the contestants!

Scotty says it’s a monster… incredible views. (Yes they are I can concur!) Apartments 4 and 5 king of the castle... Hang on! Apartment 1 contains a safe… oooh what could be in there!?

Here we go nitty gritty time:

Queenslanders Norm and Jess “Geeze it’s nice here” I love her already, Creedence playing in the background… Norm's a builder (that’s handy) aw Jess is in radio too! Snap. Two kids and want more… gee whiz

Ha, they’re worried they’ve turned up on the wrong day, I always feel like that heading to parties or an event.

Oops, they’ve parked in the bike lane… hmmm City of Port Phillip will probably give you a $97 fine for that. --- FYI that dual bike lane is confusing for locals as much as visitors so I am not surprised. But expect to be yelled at if anyone is riding through and always look both ways.

Sara and Hayden

OOOOH yes a fighting couple already! And about directions too! They’re destined for failure if they can’t even be in a car together. I can’t work out where she pulled that U-ey… tram lines make sense in that area but I can’t make out the awning signs.

Um I wonder if this is the couple I saw bickering in the street during filming (MORE ON THAT LATER).

He's a construction manager, again – handy. 13 year age gap meh, nothing. Mine’s 15. Oh dear “you’re being cow” that’s not very husbandly language!

This definitely HAS to be the couple I saw bickering in the street during filming. (BUT more on that later)

Yessss Sara’s a potty mouth! We’re going to get along fine.

That’s extraordinary, I don’t remember seeing a highlights package of meltdowns as a prelude to a season!

Oh OK there’s traffic management having blocked the bike lanes off for contestants to use – stand aside CoPP from my previous concerns.



Rolling up Hayden says "Queenslanders for sure" How do you tell what a Queenslander looks like!?

ERMAGERD WE’RE GONNA BE FRIENDS! *so not going to be friends

Moving onto the next lot... “The oldest couple” (checks Block bios - they’re 48 and 46!) 

And so old they’ve got nothing interesting to say apparently ;) Welcome Kerrie and Spence. I get the feeling they'll just get on with it and be the quiet achievers.

Oh here we go! Team Netters - Bianca and Carla! Bianca’s been desperate to do the show for ages, so glad it’s happening.

More driving, I love seeing Melbourne on the telly… Is that Balaclava? They’re driving by too quickly.

Another hostie. What are the odds!? Courtney and Hans… unable to make an assessment at this point about my 'vibe' for their success in the show.


Finally we get to see inside...

Oh god I hope they keep the features of the entrance, I love that little welcome booth. Oh and stained glass! I think I was born in the wrong era.

Dead rat!? Surely that’s a plant by the production crew! There’s no rodent issues in the ‘hood! If there is, they need a Block cat, like my cat Punter…

Yeah, enough of how it looked when you walked in, got to love a preview montage - bring on the meltdowns. I'm feeling that we'll some this season that will rival those of Dee Jolly.

Oh so The Block shop is Scotty’s office!? (I snuck into the opening of the shop, so I guess we'll get to see that in the coming episodes)

Oooh they just flashed up the front of The Palais, I might have to start up a St Kilda Bingo card for future episodes when they show icons or landmarks!

No doubt the rooms they’re showing have been dressed up and displayed for shock purposes but yep people lived there… and it wasn't great but it was home to many. Let's not get too judgy.

I'm "Fricken freaking out…" - put that on a tshirt.

Oh yes, the safe… what could the timer mean tell us please Scotty! Two red covered easels will that explain what the apartments are?

90,000 applicants? That’s insane! Oooh the Penthouse level. Yes thanks. Can they rent it to me for low low prices?

<side note, I got a sneak peak a month or so ago and they’re, as you'd expect, amazing>

What’s the challenge Scotty? A kid’s room. Ah. I’d put in a ball pit and a flying fox from the top of a bunk to the kitchen! Why did he just say it's going to be the most important room you do... is that coming back later or is it just because that means you get first pick of the apartments... $220,000 for a kid’s room!? Oh no for the whole thing. I’m terrible at budgets, I’m guessing that’s going to be hard.

I’m exhausted already. Oh I love that view of town.

Towards Melbourne town - the green patch with the lights is Albert Park Lake and surrounds

Towards Melbourne town - the green patch with the lights is Albert Park Lake and surrounds

Hang on did he explain the safe? Or is that the 48 hours for the challenge and they get the money back if they win? I zoned out. Figures aren’t my thing.

Pokey dusty rooms to clear out, and sodden carpets. (Noice. Again surely that's a bit of poetic/production licence) Ooh cute little sink area.

Replace the ceiling? Get some gaffa love!

Hayden and Sara doing their own thing. Interesting. This could potentially be a genius move, but I suspect nah it won’t. “Think smart and not stupid”, can’t say I’ve heard that before.

Sleep deprivation always makes me put my best foot forward, and they haven’t even really begun! This is going to be a monumental disaster.

Teamwork, always important early on.  I’d be taking notes on who’s naughty and nice. I have an elephant like memory and no qualms about getting petty at crunch time if any other contestants didn't 'play ball'. 

Jess wants a sunken day bed for a kid? That kid will be climbing up the ‘transcendental’ curtain before you can say Namaste bitches.

Fix ya hardhat Biancs!

I like those graphics. Is a tepee cultural appropriation? Or is it just a tiny tent…

Oh so they get the burly dudes to help them move their crap! Maybe they are the smart not stupid people they were purporting to be.

Did Kerrie and Spence make that house in that magazine!? Oh surely they win! Might go alright if they have naps, seeing they’re “old”… (no I'm not going to let this go as I'm nearer their ages than the others')

A coiffured ceiling? Does it have flicky hair? Whatever it’s actually called – sounds a tad ambitious to me. For a challenge room that potentially means nothing if it's not a part of the actual apartment you get in the end.

Look at his sweaty regret face!? Good luck Spence! I’m nervous for you. And Kerrie.


I love these drone shots, the Catani lawns look like velvet!

I love these drone shots, the Catani lawns look like velvet!

Why would you order panels that big for such a tiny room? (Did I mention I’m bad at maths and therefore geometry so I may have no idea). Hopefully I work out who is who better by tomorrow night.

Looking for a carpark for an hour at a Shopping Centre, clearly it’s Chaddy on a Sunday. Also an fyi re St Kilda parking always look down near Loch Street towards Middle Park where she is, you can often find a sneaky longer non metered park if you’re in the area.  But don’t tell anyone. Please. That’s my secret spot.

Hang on, did that lady at the van say she’s from The Block Shop? It’s across the road, why did she drive!? Maybe it was before they moved in... it’s hard to tell what’s real at this point of filming. It opened in February.

AGAIN BIANCA – what’s with ya helmet!?

I love it when the contestants quibble about how much they have to do when they’re standing their talking rubbish while actual tradies go hammer and tong around them.

Courtney’s going to be quite demanding of my patience, isn’t she.

Yes Scotty, smoke and mirrors! C’mon Courtney, you can do it.

Ruh Roh. You can’t take someone’s door. Controversy number 1, we are off! What was that little mutter?

Goody! 25 hours to go on the kids bedroom challenge and it looks like people have done sweet FA!

Ooh poor communicators, we’ve all worked with them or lived with them. Use your words darl!

I love wallpaper but effed if I’m confident enough in doing that!

Ha safety inductions! This could totally bring people undone. No ticket no show. Or something. Flight attendants should fully appreciate this!

Oh ouch, Emma! Setting the boundaries early! Stay staunch.

Cherry bomb! TUNE! I'm really going to enjoy the music overlays. 

Oh what a pain when you forget your wallet, just recently I had to add Google Pay onto my phone for that very reason. And Kerrie has to go back!? Oh no, disaster!

Richmond Mitre 10 to Fitzroy Street… this could be interesting. A 20 minute drive back at best!


Oh Kerrie, we’ve all done that. Not the little wee but the losing of the card. Ok, yes the little wee too.

Ah a classic pencil case! Didn’t know you could still buy those. I never had one cause I couldn’t fit my whole name in the slots! She won’t be back for another hour! Not good.

More driving. Excellent. Jess, no I don’t think you can turn right at Jackson. That’s a nightmare. You’re where? How did you get onto City Road now!? LOL Now you’re in the tunnel. Oh babe. You are in all sorts. Even if there’s dodgy editing, and I don't think there is, that’s hilarious!

Hang on what did it say on the safe clock? Has anyone got time to do all the stuff that needs to happen?

No one likes flat-packing. You’re kidding yourself Carla.

Ok now for the covfeve ceiling. Can’t wait to see how this turns out (if).

Oh 16 hours, that’s not so bad. But it’s 455pm what time is tools down for noise reasons?

Right 5pm. Sheesh. And he did the ceiling hoo ha! Champion.

I need to go to Tolarno for a wine just watching them. I feel grimey!

Right, I just lapsed into a coma thinking about paint fumes, no sleep and being stuck inside a room that small for pretty much 24 hours. I’d go feral and would make so many mistakes! Isn’t painting ideally supposed to be accurate?

Stressy so stressy, you’re tired, you’re emotional and you have to decide which apartment could be the best one to choose. And there’s that stupid safe again in Apartment 1. Someone choose Apartment 1 first please to get it over and done with! I NEED TO KNOW.

Geez was that Courtney!? I don't want to get into scatalogical territory but I've never understood the so-called nervous poo.

Back to the drama - I’m no psychic but anyone could see that adjusting that tongue was going to end in disaster! Why did you need to shut the door anyway? Bloody boys, always needing to touch things.

Oh she is going to have a full panic attack! NO not a hook to next episode!? Poo.

Shaynna is psychic! Sensing the panic!

Good choice ending on Highway To Hell…did you know AC/DC lived around the corner in Dalgety Street briefly? 

WOO indeed! SO good to have The Block back.

See you tomorrow night.

Welcome to Fitzroy Street

Hi, I'm Rosewal, I'm a stickybeak and a St Kilda local. 

I work in the media, love watching telly and Fitzroy Street, St Kilda has been a thread through my whole life, when I heard The Block was moving into the 'hood I saw it as a massive positive.

Like most of my friends there's mixed emotions about The Gatwick - a fixture of Fitzroy Street forever - it provided a refuge for countless people for decades but unfortunately escalating needs and issues saw the dear old Gatty issued with a forced use-by date as conditions deteriorated and a level of unease along the strip permeated.

The sisters who had been running it with their family since the 1970s decided to sell it to television station Channel 9 for the juggernaut The Block, dividing a community: commercial interests versus social housing and mental health needs. But that was the deal and that's what we have so I've decided to celebrate the change and see what they've done with the place and what it could potentially bring to Fitzroy Street which has been going through what you might call a lean period. We all have them and it's shared by most strip shopping centres across Melbourne.

I've been sneaking around watching the progress and have visited the apartments as they've been worked on and in this blog I'll recap episodes of The Block, bring you a bit of the area's history and I'll chat with long term locals and give you an insight into what it's like to live in the neighbourhood - where to go, what to do what to see.

And with the Fitzroy Street Traders Association we invite you to come check it all out.