Penwortham is a small town in the Clare Valley, South Australia, along the Main North Road, approximately 10 kilometres south of Clare and 14 kilometres north of Auburn. It is surrounded by natural eucalyptus bushland and a section of the Skilly Hills, which in turn forms part of the Mount Lofty Ranges.
Penwortham shares its name with the town of Penwortham in Lancashire, England. Penwortham (in the United Kingdom) was the home of Richard Arkwright, the inventor of the water frame that kick-started the textile industry in the late 18th century. John Horrocks is likely to have been a descendant of Arkwright. Penwortham is a unique town name with a precise meaning: a settlement on a hill by a ford. Horrocks originally called his settlement Penwortham-on-the-Hill. He was also born at his family home of Penwortham Hall, in Preston, Lancashire. The name is a hybrid of the Welsh pen, meaning headland and an Old English word worphamm, meaning enclosed homestead.
Penwortham is in the District Council of Clare and Gilbert Valleys, the state electoral district of Frome, and the Australian House of Representatives Division of Grey.