AUGUSTA: is a town on the south-west coast of Western Australia, where the Blackwood River emerges into Flinders Bay. It is the nearest town to Cape Leeuwin, on the furthest southwest corner of the Australian continent. In the 2001 census it had a population of 1,091; by 2011 the population of the town was 1,292 (excluding East Augusta).
Augusta was a summer holiday town for many during most of the twentieth century, but late in the 1990s many people chose to retire to the region for its cooler weather. As a consequence of this and rising land values in the Augusta-Margaret River area, the region as experienced significant social change
The following month, Stirling sailed with a party of prospective settlers on board the "Emily Taylor". After arriving at the mouth of the Blackwood River, the party spent four days exploring the area. Stirling then confirmed his decision to establish a sub-colony, the settlers' property was disembarked, and the town of Augusta declared at the site.
Stirling named the town in honour of Prince Augustus Frederick, Duke of Sussex, the sixth son of George III, due to its location within Sussex County one of the 26 counties of Western Australia that were designated in 1829 as cadastral divisions. (Now, that is something I'd not heard of before).
Many tourist websites and information conflate Augusta and Cape Leeuwin with features that exist nearby. In 2009, 2 Oceans FM (Augusta) was set up at the Augusta Community Centre and began broadcasting on 97.1MHZ FM.
We have been to Augusta many times and never failed to pay a visit to the *old water wheel (above) and the magnificent lighthouse. My friend Judy and I once spent part of a camping holiday near Molloy Island, a short distance out of Augusta.
*The water wheel system was built in 1895 to supply water for the stone masons of the lighthouse and water to the lighthouse-keepers' cottages. The water is supplied by a natural fall from a spring that exists in marshland approximately 330 metres away which in turn created a flow over the wheel which revolved and activated a ram pump to deliver water by pipe to the light house area.
It probably delivered about 1 litre (wasting 8 litres) every stroke, but it operated continuously day and night. Because the level of the spring has subsided over the years, the water is now electronically pumped to the aqueduct. It quickly became encrusted with a coating of limestone and is now frozen in rock. As the water is now pumped electronically you can see how the water flows over each section of the aqueduct, eventually flowing over the stationary wheel creating a lovely waterfall. The lighthouse is still being supplied water from the spring, but through mains pipes now - along with half the town.