Trip Start Jul 25, 2012
136Trip End Ongoing
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Two nights in the park and it was time to move on. Wasn't sure which direction to take so I called into the information centre and collected a few ideas, then I checked parks that take dogs and knew which direction I was heading...Bunbury.
Still haven't caught the little 'beast' yet, but it sure is devouring the cheese.
Prior to European settlement, the area was home to the Wardandi
people. Early explorers found them to be timid and settlers found them
excellent trackers, and many of them found employment on farms. The
first sighting of the coast was by Captain A.P. Jonk in the VOC Emeloort, who sighted land at 33°12'S (most likely opposite the estuary from Australind) on 24 February 1658 while looking for the Vergulde Draeck but did not land. A few months later, the Elburg under Capt. J.P. Peereboom landed at what is now Bunbury and met three Aboriginals, returning to Batavia on 16 July 1658.In 1802–03, Nicolas Baudin
visited the coast and explored the estuary and nearby rivers, and named
Point Casuarina in Bunbury after one of his ships, and the Leschenault
Inlet after onboard botanist Jean Baptiste Leschenault de la Tour.
The name Australind is a combination of Australia and India, which was chosen due to the belief that the area could be used for breeding horses for the British Indian Army, as was later achieved in Cervantes, Northampton and Madura. In 1841, the Western Australian Land Company purchased 103,000 acres (420 km2) of land in 1841 with a plan to create an English-style village populated by settlers. The area had been mapped in 1831 by John Septimus Roe
and explored by land by Lieutenant Henry Bunbury in 1836. A detailed
plan of the town included a town square, church, a school, stores, a
mill and a public hall, and Marshall Clifton, who arrived on the Parkfield in 1841, was appointed leader of the 440 settlers.
Within barely two years, however, the settlement was abandoned due
largely to the poor soils and climate - no water in summer and too much
of it in winter - and the settlers drifted away. Little of the planned
town was ever developed. The company folded and the land was mostly resumed by the Crown, and the settlement plans were abandoned officially in 1875. The Parkfield name lives on in a nearby rural locality and in a primary school in northern Australind.
A handful of historic buildings, including St Nicholas Church (1848)
and Henton Cottage (1841) on Paris Road, and Clifton's former residence
Upton House (1847) on Old Coast Road, still exist in the town.
St Nicholas Church, originally a worker's cottage, is 3.6 metres in
width and 8.2 metres in length, and is believed to be the smallest
church in Australia, while Henton Cottage was the town's first hotel.
In the 1860s, Australind was the most significant town in the
Harvey-Brunswick region, and contained a school, post office and store.
Additionally, a bridge had been built over the Brunswick River to allow
nearby settlers to make use of the town's services. However, the town
did not grow - in the 1890s, the construction of the Perth to Bunbury
railway via Pinjarra shifted the focus of development to agricultural and timber towns further inland.
The population of the town was 33 (15 males and 18 females) in 1898. Even as late as the 1971 Census, just 418 people lived in the Australind area.
Some early signs of development included the Bunbury Golf Course at Clifton Park, built in 1948, and industries including a titanium dioxide
pigment factory and waste water plant set up in or near the town,
utilising its proximity to the Port of Bunbury. However, suburban
development as part of "Greater Bunbury" saw the town quadruple in size
A primary school opened in 1980, relieving pressure on nearby Eaton,
and was followed by a high school which opened in 1987. New estates
opened over the coming years. In the mid-1980s the State Government and
the Shire of Harvey made plans to relocate most of the industries to a
new industrial park at nearby Kemerton, and by 2001 the town was
predominantly residential with increasing property values ($402,000 in
2006) and the census region reported over 10,000 residents, over half of
whom are first- or second-generation British immigrants with a notable Italian minority.
St Nichols ChurchHenton Cottage