Shire of Harvey
About the area
ABS ERP 2016
The Shire of Harvey is named after the Harvey River, which was named by Sir James Stirling after Admiral Sir John Harvey.
Location and boundaries
The Shire of Harvey is located in the South West Region of Western Australia, about 140 kilometres south of Perth. The Shire of Harvey is bounded by the Shire of Waroona in the north, the Shires of Boddington and Collie in the east, the Shire of Dardanup and the City of Bunbury in the south, and the Indian Ocean in the west.
The Shire of Harvey encompasses the localities of Australind, Beela, Benger, Binningup, Brunswick, Cookernup, Harvey, Hoffman, Leschenault, Mornington, Myalup, Parkfield, Roelands, Uduc, Warawarrup, Wellesley, Wokalup and Yarloop.
The Shire of Harvey is largely rural, with growing rural-residential and residential areas in several townships. The Shire encompasses a total land area of nearly 1,800 square kilometres, including 42 kilometres of coastline. The largest towns are Australind and Leschenault, with smaller townships at Binningup, Brunswick Junction, Cookernup, Harvey and Yarloop. Rural land is used largely for dairy farming, beef farming, citrus fruit growing, market gardening and timber production, with some viticulture.
The Shire of Harvey is served by the South Western Highway, Old Coast Road, the Australind Bypass and The Australind Train (Perth-Bunbury).
European settlement dates from the 1840s. Land was used mainly for dairy farming, grazing and orcharding. Growth took place during the late 1800s and early 1900s, spurred by the establishment of townships, the opening of the railway line from Perth, irrigation and growth in the timber industry. The population of the Shire gradually increased from about 3,600 in 1911 to about 5,400 in 1933, and continued to increase to about 6,800 in 1961. The population then declined slightly, falling to about 6,500 in 1971, before increasing again to 6,700 in 1976, and then continuing to grow to about 9,600 in 1986. Expansion continued from the late 1980s, with the population rising to about 12,000 in 1991, and then to over 22,000 in 2011. Most of the new development has been in Australind and Leschenault. Growth is expected to continue.
The original inhabitants of the Harvey area were various Aboriginal tribes.