Australind, Western Australia

Infobox Australian Place | type = suburb
name = Australind
city = Bunbury
state = wa

caption =
lga = Shire of Harvey
postcode = 6233
area = 7.3
pop = 5,116 (2001 Census)
est = 1841
stategov = Murray-Wellington
fedgov = Forrest
dist1 = 12 | location1 = Bunbury
near-nw =
near-n = Leschenault
near-ne = Kemerton
near-w =
near-e = Kingston
near-sw = Pelican Point
near-s = Eaton
near-se = Millbridge

Australind is a satellite town and outer northern suburb of Bunbury, Western Australia, and is located 12 km north-east of Bunbury's central business district. Its Local Government Area is the Shire of Harvey.


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. [cite book|last=O'Brien|first=Tom (Thomas Niel)|title=Some abridged history of Bunbury 1658-1995|year=1996|publisher=Leslie O'Brien|location=Garran, ACT|id=ISBN 0-646-28639-0] 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 convert|103000|acre|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. [LandInfo WA|c|A|2007-01-17] [cite web|url=|title=Local Towns - Australind|accessdate=2006-10-04|author=Shire of Harvey] 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. [cite web|url=|title=Australind|accessdate=2006-10-04|author=Walkabout Australian Travel Guide] 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. [cite web|url=|title=Australian Heritage - Australind|author=Hallmark Editions|accessdate=2006-12-25]

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. 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 by 1981.

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.


Australind is bordered to the south by the Collie River, to the west by the Leschenault Estuary and to the east by the Brunswick River. It includes the estates of Galway Green and Clifton Park. Several suburbs - Leschenault, Kemerton and most recently Kingston - have seceded from Australind since the 1980s.

James Battye described the area thus:

Australind is beautifully situated on the eastern side of Leschenault Inlet, at a distance of about six miles (10 km) from Koombanah Bay, or, as it has been generally called, Port Leschenault, a good roadstead, within Point Casuarina, at the eastern extremity of Geographe Bay. The bay is open only from north or north and by east to west-north-west or west and by north; but as there is a strong undercurrent setting out, ships ride safely even in heavy gales from that quarter. [J.S. Battye [ "Western Australia: a history from its discovery to the inauguration of the Commonwealth"] (1924)]


Australind has the Australind Village Shopping Centre, which contains a Coles supermarket and various specialty stores. The 18-hole Bunbury Golf Club, which hosts the annual South West Open each June, is located within the Clifton Park subdivision south of the main town on the Collie River.


Australind has a high school: [ Australind SHS] ; (1987) and three primary schools: [ Australind] (1980), [ Clifton Park] (1988) and Parkfield (1993), as well as a private Catholic primary school named L.C.P.S.


Australind is served by the 701 (Australind) route from Bunbury's central bus station, with a journey time of approximately 32 minutes. The route is operated by Bunbury City Transit for the Public Transport Authority. [ [ Bunbury 5] , Bunbury City Transit, effective 18 January 2004. Accessed 2006-10-04]

Despite the name, the Transwa Australind rail service does not stop in or transit the town.


External links

* [ Area history - Bunbury Port Authority]
* [ Australind website]
* [ Schooling at Australind] - Harvey District Oral History Group
* [ Bunbury Golf Club]

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