A future for Avondale in bush produce research

The National Trust of Western Australia is working with the Shire of Beverley to determine a sustainable future for Avondale Farm which respects the history and significance of this place. Although established as freehold farming land, in 1918 it was made available as a training farm for returned servicemen and in 1926 agricultural research activities began and Avondale Farm became one of several experimental farms across the state. It is acknowledged as a place of significance to the local Ballardong Noongar people.

In keeping with its long history in the areas of research and investigation the Trust and the Shire propose to work with the Ballardong Aboriginal people and other interested parties to position Avondale as an Incubation Hub focussing on research for the emerging Bush Produce industry in Western Australia. The purpose of Avondale Farm will be to support the development of the industry to grow, value add and market Native Bush Produce.  Demand is growing for bush produce, in restaurants, in the home and from the pharmaceuticals and nutraceutical industries who have an interest in the medicinal properties of Australian native plants.

As well as research activities the preservation of Avondale Farm’s unique combination of historical, Aboriginal and natural heritage will also be considered through tourism programs, training opportunities and community access. The sorts of initiatives which could be considered include a café specialising in bush tucker food, an Aboriginal art gallery or cultural centre and continuing access to a further developed heritage precinct, the bush reserve and farm machinery museum. The activities being considered at Avondale Farm, complement and provide strong links to other tourism activities on offer at Beverley in the areas of the arts, nature trails and heritage tourism.

Planning for a re-activated Avondale Farm has begun with support for the concept received from local indigenous representatives, the Shire of Beverley, Regional Development Australia, the Wheatbelt Development Commission and ANFAB (Australian Native Food and Botanicals).  The next step is to undertake a comprehensive planning phase that will involve attracting support and resources from a number of important stakeholders for this exciting project.

The planning phase for the Avondale Farm Bush Produce proposal is expected to take two years. In the meantime, the National Trust and the Shire of Beverley, with the support of AFPA, continue to undertake works at Avondale Farm to conserve and upgrade buildings and facilities to increase their potential for future uses.

Who’s who at Avondale Farm

National Trust of Western Australia
The National Trust of Western Australia manages Avondale Farm on behalf of the community and government and works to engage and inspire community support for the conservation of our natural, Aboriginal and historic heritage for the present and the future.
For general information about the National Trust contact the Trust on 9321 6088 or trust@ntwa.com.au.
For general information about Avondale day to day operations contact Monica Van der Snoek on 0427 477 734, Avondale@ntwa.com.au

Avondale Farm – Bush Produce Project
In 2017, the Shire of Beverley and National Trust, jointly appointed Amanda McLean as Executive Liaison Officer, Avondale
Amanda’s role is to support the development of a new strategic focus for a reactivated Avondale Farm. Please contact Amanda for any queries or comments relating to the Bush Produce Proposal on 9646 1200 or amanda.mclean@beverley.wa.gov.au

Shire of Beverley
The Shire of Beverley owns and is responsible for the tractor museum located at Avondale Farm. The Shire is an important stakeholder in the Bush Produce Proposal. Please contact Amanda McLean for further information.

AFPA (Avondale Farm Project Association)
AFPA is a volunteer group supporting the activities of both the National Trust and Shire of Beverley at Avondale Farm. AFPA owns and cares for the Clydesdale horses located at Avondale and assists the Shire to care for and promote the tractor museum collection. AFPA assists the Trust by organising volunteers to support the activities of Avondale Farm including opening Avondale Farm for visits, caring for the bush reserve and the general upkeep of the Avondale historical buildings and grounds.To volunteer with AFPA contact Secretary: Rachael Lucas: 0408 948 228, milo.jarrah1@bigpond.com