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Koorda

(C) Don Copley

KOORDA

 

HEMA Map reference 74/A5

 

30 49' 30" S 117 28' 52" E

 

 

Where is this?

 


 

 

Statistics

 

Km from Perth

236

Population

497

Rainfall

300mm

Max Temp

C

Min Temp

C

Autogas

 

Telecentre

Yes

 

Caravan Park

 

Koorda

 

08 9684 1219

 

Services

 

Police

08 9684 1241

Hospital

08 9684 1288

Visitor Centre

08 9684 1219

 

link to Mingor.net website

 

Attractions

 

Museum, Koorda reserve, Badgerin Rock, Noorajin Soak, Kularin Soak, Mt. Collier, Samphire, Mollerin Rock, Yowerda, Moningarin Soak, Nugget Water Hole.

 

Buildings of note

 

Unknown

 

Calendar Of Events

 

September, Corn dolly festival and agricultural show.

 

 

 

Description

 

In 1836, Surveyor General John Septimus Roe led an expedition east of the Avon Valley, searching for new pastoral land. One of his camps was located a few miles north of where the town of Koorda is today, and was inhabited by nomadic farmers and sandalwooders until the first settlers arrived in the early 1900's.
 

Initial settlement was based on the 'conditional purchase' system where a homestead block of 160 acres was granted and a further larger block of around 1000 acres was granted based on improvements being made within a certain time.

 

The first major drought in the area took place in 1911 and the Government responded by sinking a series of wells through out the district.


With the arrival of the railway in 1917, the township became established, and wheat and sheep farming flourished. The name, like so many others, is of Aboriginal origin and may mean 'married person'.
 

Originally just a railway workers campsite, the township gradually developed and all the usual facilities including General Store, Post Office, Blacksmith, Butcher, Baker and Greengrocer all appeared. Like many small country towns there were few recreational facilities in the early years. Initially it was all about getting established and apart from a town hall and a church most towns only developed other recreational projects like bowling clubs and swimming pools once the town had been established for quite some time.


Until scheme water arrived in Koorda in 1958, one of the most precious commodities in the wheat belt was water. Many of the dams, rock catchments, tanks and community sheep dips that were established in these early years still exist today (eg. Dunt's Dam, Mollerin Rock, Newcarlbeon, Lake Margarette and Kularin).

Koorda has a number of lovely old buildings. The Koorda Museum was originally a hospital, and it bears witness to this past with displays of historical hospital and surgical equipment in one of the original wards. You can also view displays of farm machinery and homestead effects used by the area's early pioneers.

The current Post Office, first opened in 1937, still operates in its original form. The CWA Community Centre in Railway Street, originally the Koorda Shire Council, is also close to its original structure, as is the Koorda Hotel, popular with artists because of its imposing architecture. The Pioneer Hall and Avenue of Trees is part of the Koorda Heritage Trail, a 2km town walk which commemorates the contribution of Koorda's pioneers to the development of the district.

There are numerous scenic areas to stop, most with public barbecue facilities. Mollerin Rock, Newcarlbeon and Badgerin Rock are popular spots to enjoy the surroundings and perhaps see some of the local inhabitants - kangaroo, echidna, and dozens of bird varieties. The Lions Park is a popular picnic stop in town.

Each spring, the wildflowers turn the reserves surrounding Koorda into a carpet of colour. Many examples of the various wildflower species found around Koorda can be seen at the Wildflower Park (part of the Koorda Heritage Trail), a 10km drive from town.

This privately-owned 28 hectare park has public barbecue facilities available for visitors. Wildflowers can also be viewed at Wheat belt Dried Flowers. (Phone 08 9684 3025 for an appointment).

Early in September, Koorda hosts its annual Agricultural Show, which brings together past and present Koorda residents, along with a large number of visitors. The show features many agricultural events and displays, including the "Corn Dollies", the emblem of the shire.

Corn Dolly making is an ancient craft, originating in the days when it was believed a spirit lived in the cornfields. To care for the spirit at harvest time, and ensure the success of the following year's harvest, a corn dolly was made for the spirit to rest in. Frank Lodge (who came from Durham in England) is credited with bringing the first corn dolly to this area in 1911. The local Agricultural Society conducts workshops on corn dolly making.

 


 

(C) Don Copley

 

 

 

 

I'm lost please take me home...

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