Historical Locations and Museums

The Old Settlement Margaret River

Museum in the group settlement building and the old Bramley school

69 Bussell Highway, Margaret River

The Bramley School 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 museum holds a collection of Group Settlement artefacts, dating from between 1921-1935 and is surrounded by farming implements, blacksmith tools, renovated spring carts and an old dairy and milk shed that were used during the same period.

Both of these 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.

Opening hours
Tuesday 11:30am – 2:00pm
Thursday 11:30am – 4:00pm
Saturday 10:00am – 3:00pm
Sunday 10:00m – 3:00pm

Augusta Historical Museum

Augusta Historical Museum

Blackwood Avenue, Augusta

Established in 1979, the Augusta Historical Museum offers visitors a comprehensive display documenting the rich history of Augusta and Districts since settlement in 1830.

Displays include details of families involved in the 1830s, artefacts from local shipwrecks, from the MC Davies timber empire (1880s to 1915); the local environment, personal effects of early settlers, details of the 1920s group settlements, commemorative china, coins and medals, garments from various eras, church organs and the whale rescue event whichmade headline news around the world.

For more information visit the Margaret River Region website

Busselton Museum

Busselton Museum

Old Butter Factory Complex, Peel Terrace, Busselton

The Heritage Butter Factory and Busselton Museum has ten display rooms packed with photographs, equipment and memorabilia which trace the family, social, civic, commercial and maritime history of Busselton.Everything from agriculture to whaling; from crockery, clocks and cameras to sewing machines, travel and transport is included.The one-hectare site is nestled on the banks of the picturesque Vasse River. A replica of the Jetty Rotunda enhances the vista and the exhibits demonstrate Busselton’s diverse agricultural, forestry and maritime history. Special attention is focused on the famous 1920’s Group Settlement Scheme which shaped much of the development of the South West.Visit us, and discover a time now past.

For more information, visit the museum’s website

Ellensbrook Homestead

Ellensbrook Homestead

Ellen Brook Road, Cowaramup

Built by the Bussell Family in 1857, the property has changed very little over time. Now a National Trust listed building, the homestead is open to the public at a small fee and a walk through the house is much like going back in time.

Admittance into the grounds-only is free for all.

For more information about this place and admission into the homestead, visit the Margaret River Region website

Margaret River Old Hospital

Ellensbrook Homestead

21-33 Tunbridge Street, Margaret River

The hospital was built by May 1924. In 1929 extra nurses’ accommodation and the Margaret Cecil Rest House were built and the 1930s saw a new dining room, extra nurses’ bathroom, operating theatre and sterilising facilities added. The Old Hospital buildings are now being used by the Margaret River Comunity Centre.

For more information about this place visit the Margaret River Community Centre website

Darnell’s General Store Witchcliffe

Darnell's General Store

Redgate Road, Rosa Brook

Darnell’s Store in Witchcliffe was originally built by Tom Hopson “who travelled in from the mill (East Witchcliffe) each day as he built the hall and shop, but no living quarters’. The second owners were Mr and Mrs Fearn, who took over the store after Hopson’s death, “with Mrs Fearn running the shop while Mr Fearn ran their farm at Witchcliffe.” In 1938, Bill Darnell and George Shervington bought the store in Rosa Brook and Shervington running the new Witchcliffe one. With the death of Shervington, Darnell changed over to run Witchcliffe, leaving his son Bill, to run the Rosa Brook store.

“Druids” Hall Witchcliffe

Darnell's General Store

Bussell Highway, Rosa Brook

The hall was originally erected by the Samworth family as a shop to service the group settlers who were in the process of developing farms in the area. By the early 1940s it had become too small. The hall was then utilised for living accommodation in the early 1940s. the Druid’s Lodge bought the building in 1945 (28th May) and stayed there until it was given to the Shire Council.

CWA Hall Witchcliffe

Darnell's General Store

Redgate Road, Rosa Brook

The Witchcliffe CWA commenced in February 1933 and had raised enough money to erect their own hall by 1936. The hall is surrounded by a natural garden and a wood and paled fence. It is situated on the edge of the town.

Darnell’s General Store Rosa Brook

Darnell's General Store

Rosa Brook Road, Rosa Brook

Darnell’s Store in Witchcliffe is in it’s original state, not only externally but internally as well. The store is set out and operated as is was in the 1930s, which gives its unique character and attracts many tourists. Even though it has this old fashioned character and charm, it is still being run as a successful business providing a general store and post office to the community.

Rosa Brook Community Hall

Rosa Brook Community Hall

Rosa Brook Road, Rosa Brook

The hall originally opened as a school in 1925 to serve the local group settlement children. It was later used as a community hall and extend to include kitchen facilities and a stage. The hall is frequently used by sporting groups, playground, the CWA and in addition, many social functions are held over there during the year.

St. John the Evangelist Church Osmington

Osmington Church

Cnr Osmington Rd & Canebreak Rd, Osmington

St John’s Anglican Church in Osmington was built by “Cotter” Williams. Williams wife although not an Anglican herself, helped organise fundraising events for the erection of the church building, although it was mainly through the generosity of Mrs Rivington in England. The church was opened on 27th December 1933 and dedicated by Bishop Wilson on 2nd February 1934.

The church was adjacent to the school, which has now been removed, and so the church building is the only tangible proof of the existence of the tiny hamlet of Osmington. A plaque to group settlement has been set outside the church and a list of present residents is inside. The church remains open at all time and has remained intact

CWA Hall Rosa Glen

CWA Building in Rosa Glen

Cnr Rosa Glen Rd & Lucas Rd, Rosa Glen

Only the single teacher’s quarters remains of the old school in Rosa Glen. The building is now used by the Country Women’s Association.

Keenan’s Number 1 Mill

CWA Building in Rosa Glen

Wooditjup National Park

If you take a stroll along the Chimney Walk Trail in the Wooditjup National Park, you will be sure to come across an enormous curved chimney. The chimney was part of Keenans No 1 Mill, the first pine sawmill in Margaret River. The Keenans No1 Mill was built in 1961 by Aub McEvoy who worked for the Forests Department.

The chimney was used to burn off saw dust and off cuts from the timbers.