Burra - SA



DEG: -33.682137 138.938828
DMS: 33º 40' 55.69" S 138º 56' 19.78" E
UTM: 54 H 6271181mN 308933mE
Altitude: 469.33m


Place Type

Population - Town


141.78kms North of Adelaide - Driving 160 km (2 hours 2 mins)
711.82kms NorthWest of Melbourne - Driving 875 km (9 hours 14 mins)

Address & Contact

Burra SA 5417
Phone: N/A
Email: N/A
Web: N/A


The economy of South Australia was approaching bankruptcy, when copper was discovered, first at Kapunda and then at Burra. Two shepherds, Thomas Pickett and William Streair simultaneously discovered copper in two localities near the Burra Burra Creek in 1845. Revealing their lodes to two rival companies proved costly for the shepherds with both of them, only receiving a few miserable pounds.

The companies, nicknamed the Nobs and the Snobs, jointly purchased a special survey of land from the government, at a cost of twenty thousand pounds. As the two discoveries only just fit into the survey, they drew lots to see which company took control of each. The Nobs, a group of pastoralists which included the owners of the Kapunda mine drew the Southern lode, and called their mine the Princess Royal. Its yield was small compared to the Northern discovery, and the Snobs, a group of Rundle and Hindley Street traders, made incredible fortunes, extracting three hundred million dollars worth of copper from the mine, in today’s value.

A population expansion, through the mining period, saw five thousand residents in Burra, a greater population than Brisbane and Perth combined. 1600 men, women and children, lived in tiny dugouts in the banks of the Burra Creek. “Creek Street”, stretched for three miles, with floods, disease and the companies insistence, eventually forcing them out of their homes, and into the first company built housing in Australia. Separate villages developed, which are all distinguishable today. The Cornish lived in Redruth, the Scots in Aberdeen, the Welsh in Llwchwr, and the English in Hampton, each village having separate shops and facilities.

Burra’s Redruth Goal, was the first built outside Adelaide. It housed some thirty prisoners, of both genders, and later became a girls reformatory. Extracts from the Doctors journal are contained in the goal, with ailments such as “unable to walk to Adelaide” and “silly, a little” or “venereal eruption” leaving much to the imagination. Medicine seems to have come a long way!

It’s hard to imagine Burra as it was in the copper mining era, let alone before it …… before the trees were stripped from the hills, to feed the furnaces of the now demolished smelting works. A time when the Ngadjuri people wandered freely through this same pristine location.

Home for the world famous ‘Monster Mine’…Burra, what a town! Burra’s Market Square looks so much part of the 19th Century that it features in the film Breaker Morant. Crowds of Cornish miners no longer sprawl out of the pub for fist fights and wrestling bouts; instead it is a relaxed, quiet and historic place for a getaway.

Very few mid-nineteenth century settlements have been preserved like Burra. It has escaped the ravages of modernization through the great work of the National Trust and local residents. Today Burra has everything you will need for a truly memorable stay.
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Closest Weather Station

Clare at 31/04:00am CST
Distance from Burra 35.53km SW
TemperatureFeels LikeRel. HumidityDew PointPressureRainfallWind DirectionWind SpeedGusts

Closest Climatic Station

Clare High School
Distance from Burra 35.53km SW
Mean Max. °C30.329.925.921.617.113.512.814.217.320.424.927.3
Mean Min. °C14.715.
Mean Rain mm18.323.527.332.851.365.766.164.759.150.238.537.4

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