Margaret River & Districts Historical Society

News

The theme of this year's South West Heritage festival is ‘Timber’ - How it’s sustained us as an industry across the district.
For more information visit the Busselton & South West Heritage Festival Facebook page.

In 2024, the centenary of the original Margaret River hospital will be celebrated.
For more information visit the Margaret River Community Centre website.

Historical Society

The Margaret River and District Historical Society (MRDHS) began around 30 years ago and is dedicated to collecting, preserving and cataloguing the local history of Margaret River and surrounding districts. The MRDHS centers around the Old Settlement on the banks of the Margaret River and has around 30 members plus volunteers.

The headquarters of the Society is located in the Bramley School at the site and contains historical school paraphernalia, many local photographs and changing displays. In 2015, after many years of restoration work by MRDHS members and volunteers, another Group Settlement building, a “Groupie” house, was officially opened and operates as a museum.

The buildings and displays contain a vast collection of interesting local artifacts. A movie theatre located in the blacksmith workshop shows the interesting history of group settlement in the area.

The blacksmith workshop at the Old Settlement
Group settlement building and Bramley School at the Old Settlement
The Old Settlement Museum

The museum holds a collection of Group Settlement artefacts, dating from 1920 and is surrounded by an extensive collection of farming implements, blacksmith tools, renovated spring carts and an old dairy and milk shed that were used during this period.

The Bramley school, the group settlement building, the blacksmith workshop and the other buildings offer an insight into the history of early life in the district during the early 1920’s and the families that once lived and worked the land.

The blacksmith workshop also features a movie theatre and displays items of more recent local history.



Opening hours

Tuesday 10:00am - 12:30pm
Thursday 1:30pm - 4:00pm
Saturday 10:00am - 3:00pm
Sunday 10:00am - 1:00pm
Closed on Monday, Wednesday and Friday

The Margaret River & Districts Historical Society is located at
The Old Settlement
69 Bussell Highway
Margaret River WA 6285

Acesss and parking

The Historical Society is located just south of the river. Access to the Historical Society is through Higgins Street.

Map: Access to the Historical Society is through Higgens Street.
Introduction video created by the Perth photography group

The Margaret River and District Historical Society (MRDHS) began around 30 years ago and is dedicated to collecting, preserving and cataloguing the local history of Margaret River and surrounding districts.

Come and experience how the early settlers lived in the area. Have a look around the old settlement, run by volunteers. Participate in everyday tasks and visit the classroom in the old school.

School visits

The Old Settlement is also a great place for school excursions.

Students can experience how the early settlers lived in the area. They will be shown around the old settlement by volunteers, they can participate in everyday tasks and visit the classroom in the old school.

For more information or to book a school visit, please contact our secretary Shelley Wightman.

Mural artist "Shakey" at the Old Settlement, Margaret River

Gaby McGoldrick, reporter for The Local Pulse, interviewed Shakey onsite at the Old Settlement.

As part of Margaret River’s Centennial of Group Settlement celebrations artist Jacob Butler (AKA Shakey) painted a mural at the old settlement site.

The Margaret River Historical society supplied Shakey with old photos of people in the first group settlements. These intrepid pioneers came to Margaret River in the hope of succeeding in the local dairy and logging industries.

Shakey brought these images to life in memory of the settlers.

Mural by Shakey
Mural by Shakey
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