The Yorke Peninsula Council area is located in the Yorke and Mid North Region of South Australia, between 150 and 300 kilometres north-west and west of the Adelaide CBD. The Yorke Peninsula Council area is bounded by the Copper Coast Council area and the Barunga West Council area in the north, the Wakefield Regional Council area in the north-east, Gulf St Vincent in the east and south, and Spencer Gulf in the west.
The Yorke Peninsula Council area includes the localities of Agery, Ardrossan, Arthurton, Balgowan, Black Point, Bluff Beach, Brentwood, Chinaman Wells, Clinton, Clinton Centre, Coobowie, Corny Point, Couch Beach, Cunningham, Curramulka, Dowlingville, Edithburgh, Foul Bay, Hardwicke Bay, Honiton, Inneston, James Well, Kainton, Koolywurtie, Maitland, Marion Bay, Minlaton, Nalyappa, Parsons Beach, Petersville, Pine Point, Point Pearce, Point Souttar, Point Turton, Port Arthur, Port Julia, Port Moorowie, Port Rickaby, Port Victoria, Port Vincent, Price, Ramsay, Rogues Point, Sandilands, Sheaoak Flat, South Kilkerran, Stansbury, Sultana Point, Sunnyvale, The Pines, Tiddy Widdy Beach, Urania, Warooka, Wauraltee, Weetulta, White Hut, Winulta, Wool Bay, Yorke Valley and Yorketown.
The Yorke Peninsula Council area is predominantly rural, with the main township being Ardrossan, small townships at Edithburgh, Maitland, Minlaton, Port Victoria, Port Vincent, Stansbury, Warooka and Yorketown, and numerous small villages and holiday settlements. Rural land is used largely for agriculture (particularly grain growing and sheep and cattle grazing), with salt production, mining, fishing and tourism also being important industries. The Council area encompasses a total land area of nearly 6,000 square kilometres.
The Yorke Peninsula Council is named after the Yorke Peninsula, which was named by Captain Matthew Flinders after the Right Honourable Charles Philip Yorke.
The original inhabitants of the Yorke Peninsula Council area were the Nharangga Aboriginal people.
European settlement of the area dates from the 1840s, with land used mainly for sheep grazing and grain growing. Growth took place during the late 1800s, spurred by the establishment of mining, sand quarrying and salt production, and the transport of grain and minerals via several ports, including Ardrossan Port. Numerous small townships were established from the 1870s. A large dolomite mine was established by BHP near Ardrossan in 1950. A deep water port was constructed at Port Giles (Coobowie) in 1970, becoming the main port for exporting grain and seeds. The population has been relatively stable in recent decades.
Major features of the Council area include Innes National Park, various Conservation Parks (Carribie, Clinton, Leven Beach, Minlacowie, Point Davenport, Ramsay, Warrenben and Wills Creek), numerous beaches, TAFE SA (Narungga Campus), Edithburgh Tidal Pool, numerous salt lakes, Edithburgh Native Flora Reserve, Minlaton Fauna Park, Daly Head National Surfing Reserve, Ballywire Farm, Alpacas Chaparral, Barachel Alpacas, Barley Stacks Wines, Ardrossan Historical Museum, Bublacowie Military Museum, Edithburgh Museum, Maitland Museum, Minlaton Museum, Port Victoria Maritime Museum, Stansbury Museum, Warooka Museum, various golf clubs, Wattle Point Wind Farm, Ardrossan Dolomite Mine, Ardrossan Community Hospital, Southern Yorke Peninsula Health Service (Yorketown Hospital), Maitland Hospital, Minlaton Hospital and various jetties.
The Yorke Peninsula Council area is served by the Spencer Highway, the St Vincent Highway, the Yorke Highway, the Port of Ardrossan, Klein Point Port and Port Giles.
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