The world is full of weird and unusually named places and Western Australia is no exception - I've taken a look at eight of the more interestingly named places in WA.
To keep things local, we chose four from the Perth and greater Perth metro area as well as four from regional locations. Some of these you no doubt will have driven through so we thought it only fair to give a brief history of how and why they are named.
No, it is not the gateway to gonorrhoea as I was once asked by a relative from overseas. I explained the unfortunately named Cockburn is actually pronounced Coh-burn, but that is where my knowledge of Cockburn ended.
Putting my historian hat on (in other words jumping on Google), the common belief is the area was named in 1827 in honour of a widely respected naval officer by the name of Admiral Sir George Cockburn. And who, might you ask chose the name? None other than Captain James Stirling, the first Governor and Commander-in-chief of Western Australia. I will add that Captain Stirling was one of 15 children, so perhaps the name was in honour of his father?
Some of you may know a dag is technically used to describe dried faeces which may be hanging in the matted wool at the back end of a sheep after a
Located 5 km west of the CBD, Daglish actually derived its name from the former Premier Henry Daglish who was in office from 1904 - 1905. He also served as Mayor of Subiaco in the year preceding and succeeding
Information on the naming of Dog Swamp is scarce. Not being a detective, the swamp is located in Yokine, the aboriginal word for Dog, which was so named because of the high concentration of Dingos that lived in the area.
Some interesting historical facts about Dog Swamp, it was once the location of a mythical theme park called the Land of Make Believe and was also the home of one of Perth's very first Hungry Jacks stores which opened in 1971. My guess, they were one and the same thing. Also unconfirmed, but the opening of Hungry Jacks coincided with the demise of the Dingo population in the area.
I don't have much to add
In all seriousness though, Innaloo is respectfully named after an Aboriginal woman from Dongara. The name was chosen from a compilation of Aboriginal words because the original
I recently overheard a colleague describe their recent family outing down to Scarborough Beach as a drive down to Disaster Bay. I tend to disagree though. Scarborough Beach is not a Bay.
The real Disaster Bay is located 68
Here is a quote from 14 February 1822 describing his reasoning for naming the location "from the loss and perplexity we met within it". Unrelated, I think this sums up Scarborough Beach in its current state quite nicely.
Western Australia has a chequered history, but the naming of Point Torment is not based on any form of settler instigated activity that occurred in the area. Located 32km north of Derby, Point Torment was so named because explorer J L Stokes was subject to attacks from swarms of mosquitoes.
According to Landgate, here is what he had to say about the place back in
Useless Inlet, Loop
Useless Loop could be used to describe any number of the road layouts implemented by local governments looking to spend their budgets before the next reporting period. However, the real Useless Loop is located on the Heirisson Prong in the Southern Region of Shark Bay.
The first half of Useless Loop's unusual name was bestowed upon it by French explorer Henri-Louis de Saulces de Freycinet who remarked on the large sandbank seemingly blocking access to an inviting harbour. Today though the town is far from useless, boasting world-class fishing and a beautiful marine park on your doorstep, and it has a school, a shop and community hall.
Intrepid travellers beware, Useless Loop is a closed company town, with 70 employees and their families servicing the Solar Salt Operation Shark Bay.
For some, when talking about Woop Woop, KRS-One's 1993 song 'Sound of Da Police' may come to mind. If that's you, then I bet you just
However, according to the book Timber Milling in Australia (no I did not just read that), Woop Woop was given to a timber mill set up by The Adelaide Timber Company in 1925. The mill was once located near the town of Wilga, north of Boyup Brook in WA's South West. Anecdotally, the name Woop Woop was
Mark Campbell is the founder and director of landguide.com.au