Australind is a satellite town and outer northern suburb of Bunbury, Western Australia, and is located 12 km north-east of Bunbury’s central business district. Its Local Government Area is the Shire of Harvey.
Prior to European settlement, the area was home to the Wardandi people. Early explorers found them to be timid and settlers found them excellent trackers, and many of them found employment on farms. The first sighting of the coast was by Captain A.P. Jonk in the VOC Emeloort, sighted land at 33°12’S (most likely opposite the estuary from Australind) on 24 February 1658 while looking for the Vergulde Draeck but did not land. A few months later, the Elburg under Capt. J.P. Peereboom landed at what is now Bunbury and met three Aboriginals, returning to Batavia on 16 July 1658. In 1802-1803, Nicolas Baudin visited the coast and explored the estuary and nearby rivers, and named Point Casuarina in Bunbury after one of his ships, and the Leschenault Inlet after onboard botanist Jean Baptiste Leschenault de la Tour.
The name Australind is a combination of Australia and India, which was chosen due to the belief that the area could be used for breeding horses for the British Indian Army, as was later achieved in Cervantes, Northampton and Madura. In 1841, the Western Australian Land Company purchased 103,000 acres of land in 1841 with a plan to create an English-style village populated by settlers. The area had been mapped in 1831 by John Septimus Roe and explored by land by Lieutenant Henry Bunbury in 1836. A detailed plan of the town included a town square, church, a school, stores, a mill and a public hall, and Marshall Clifton, who arrived on the Parkfield in 1841, was appointed leader of the 440 settlers.
Within barely two years, however, the settlement was abandoned due largely to the poor soils and climate – no water in summer and too much of it in winter – and the settlers drifted away. Little of the planned town was ever developed. The company folded and the land was mostly resumed by the Crown, and the settlement plans were abandoned officially in 1875. The Parkfield name lives on in a nearby rural locality and in a primary school in northern Australind.