Boddington Western Australia
Boddington is a town and shire in the Peel region of Western Australia. Located a mere 95kms east from Mandurah on the coast and 82kms west of Narrogin. Boddington is a great place to be. It's a rural township with a strong community base, with a diverse range of community groups. The town owes its name to an early settler, Henry Boddington, who was a shepherd in the 1860's, later moving to Wagin. His name became associated with a pool in the Hotham River at which he frequently camped with his sheep.
The original settlement was called 'The Hotham', found 2km west of the current town, at the end of what is now known as Farmers Avenue, named after the Farmer family on whose farm a post office and school were established. The Hotham Valley Railway was constructed in 1912 to meet demand created by the local timber industry to 'Farmers Crossing'.
A townsite was chosen adjacent to the Boddington Pools on the Hotham River, and subsequently was gazetted as a town. The railway line continued to Boddington in 1916 and in 1920 a new one-roomed school was built. This was followed by further buildings including Roads Board office, Hotel, shops and an agricultural hall.
The town continued to expand with new industries including farming, timber, Tannin Extracts, and later the mining industry. A railway bridge was built over the upper reaches of the Murray River in 1949, originally known as "Asquith Bridge" and later as the Long Gully bridge. This was used for carting railway timber to the Banksiadale sawmill.
The area declined slowly over time, and the Dwellingup fires of 1961 devastated the local timber industry. By 1969, the railway had been closed and Boddington became a typical small service area for the surrounding district. Ironically the Asquith Bridge was destroyed by a bush fire in February 2015.
The establishment of Bauxite mining in 1979 at Boddington, continues to service Western Australia's alumina refinery at Worsley (near Collie). Further mining followed with the opening of the Boddington Gold Mine in 1987. Together the Gold & Bauxite mines create a thriving rural mining town.
Surrounding districts include Williams, Wandering, Quindanning and Dwellingup, each having their own rich history, with connections over the years through settlements, railways, roads, rivers and a strong aboriginal prescence.