• Historical Sites & Museums

Busselton Museum in the Heritage Butter Factory

Busselton Museum is open to the public Wednesday to Monday from 10 am - 4 pm, closed Tuesdays.
Old Butter Factory Complex, Peel Terrace, Busselton WA 6280
  • No Pets
  • Non Smoking Establishment
  • Special exhibitions (galleries, museums etc)
  • Toilet
  • Child Friendly
    Child Friendly
  • Picnic Spot
    Picnic Spot
  • Rainy Day
    Rainy Day
  • Sunny Day
    Sunny Day
  • Wildflower Spotting
    Wildflower Spotting
Butter Factory Information

The Heritage Butter Factory and Busselton Museum has many display rooms packed with photographs, equipment and memorabilia which trace the family, social, civic, commercial and maritime history of Busselton. Everything from agriculture to whaling; from crockery, clocks and cameras to sewing machines, travel and transport are included.

The one-hectare site is nestled on the banks of the picturesque Vasse River. A replica of the Jetty Rotunda enhances the vista and the exhibits demonstrate Busselton’s diverse agricultural, forestry and maritime history. Special attention is focused on the famous 1920’s Group Settlement Scheme.

Owned by the State Government, through the Agricultural Department, this Butter Factory was opened in 1918. In 1926 South West Dairy Produce Co-operative became the owners and the name changed to Sunny West. Development of the Group Settlement Scheme in the area caused a great upsurge in production, as there were 735 farms in the Busselton district by 1926. Then came the Great Depression of the early 1930s, the 1939-45 war and the boom period which followed. This boom saw the factory reach peak production of about 30 tons of butter per week. Before the days of refrigeration, the factory also operated an Ice Works, supplying the town of Busselton and local fishermen with much sought after ice.

High overheads during the offseason coupled with more efficient road transport caused closure of this and several other factories. Operations were then centralised at Boyanup. Busselton ceased making butter in 1952. A dried milk plant was installed, but a slump in overseas markets made the process unprofitable and production stopped. The premises served as a depot for trucks and tankers until operations ceased altogether in 1973.

The building was vested in the Shire of Busselton which then leased part of it to the Busselton Historical Society.

The Museum opened in 1975 and is now run entirely by volunteers. Tuesdays are set aside for this willing band of workers who collect Busselton memorabilia, maintain the artefacts and build new displays.

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Google Reviews

One of the best volunteer run historical museums I have ever visited (and I’ve been to a few). So many periods covered and so many artefacts from these. Room after room brings back many distant memories. I loved the old classroom and early readers. NB: No indigenous/first peoples history or their treatment is included. Bryce McLean
I don’t know how I’ve never stopped here before, what a hidden gem! One of the best settler museums I’ve seen in Australia! This is just one of the many sections. Michelle Wyle
An amazingly rich museum, we orginally thought we would stop for only 30 mins, we spend 2 hours in there reading and looking at every little thing. The lady's there were really sweet and nice. It seemed like every cabinet you looked in, you would take another pass and find something new. Considering they had a fire just in 2018, and the place is in amazing condition and have restored so many of the artifacts they thought they had lost. TOTALLY WORTH THE STOP, even if just to chat to the people who work there Madeline Riecken
A credit to the dedicated volunteers who didn’t let the fire destroy their enthusiasm. Rather than giving up, they have re-built and restored the property to rival any small town museum in Australia. Phillip Price
Loved checking over the old train while my wife looked for a birthday gift for her sister Brenton Emery
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