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Capel

A small town on the Bussell Highway about 25 kms south of Bunbury and halfway to Busselton. The townsite is located on the Capel River which was discovered by explorer Mr Ludlow in 1834. Ludlow is now the name of a smaller settlement closer to Busselton. The river was named by a Mr Bussell after his cousin, Miss Capel Carter. The town was originally called Coolingup but adopted the Capel name in 1899, two years after land was first sold here


 
 
 
 
 

Capel - Cottage Crafts north Capel

Coming into Capel from the north, this building is on the left side of the highway. It's Cottage Crafts with (as the name suggests) a craft shop, but also offers an art gallery plus a BYO restaurant. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL001

 

Capel - Capel River Bridge

The final approach into the Capel townsite travelling from the north involves crossing the Capel River Bridge. It gently curves around to the right and is a familiar sight to the locals and all those who travelled between Bunbury and Busselton before the Capel by-pass was built. You can see the hotel on the left and then the Donnybrook turn-off. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL002

 

Capel - Underneath River Bridge

The road bridge again, this time down below on the town-side. Large wooden beams support the bridge which spans the Capel River. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL003

 

Capel - Capel River

And here is the Capel River, looking down from the middle of the bridge. There is a bit of water in there, not much but then it is the middle of summer. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL004

 

Capel - Hotel

The Capel (Coolingup) Hotel built in 1880 by Mr Charles Properjohn. Pictured is a section of the hotel which runs more-or-less parallel to the main road. Originally the hotel only had room for 6 guests plus a stable for 6 horses. This was a stopping place on the Bunbury - Busselton road for travellers and for horses on the southern mail route. In the early days the hotel changed hands many times as viability was marginal. The hotel was extended in 1946. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL005

 

Capel - Corner Garage

This garage is on the right after crossing the bridge, travelling south, just across from the hotel. There has been a garage here for many decades. These days the owners have diversified quite a bit so they also deal in hardware and farm supplies. Around the side is a cafe. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL006

 

Capel

Pictured is St John's Anglican Church in Capel. A 1903 stone church used to exist on this site but it was demolished in 1923 as it was deemed to be unsafe. Today's wooden church was constructed in 1924. Photo - February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL007

 

Capel - Anglican Church Higgins Bell

This structure houses the bell to call in the congregation to St John's Anglican Church services. The tower is a memorial to five Higgins brothers who died between 1930 and 1951. Their sister Madeline was instrumental in the tower construction or at least in the naming. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL008

 

Capel - Old Garage

Next to St John's Church is this closed-down service station. The new road by-pass would have reduced trade and these little petrol stations would not be able to compete with the bigger ones in Bunbury and Busselton. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL009

 

Capel - Senior Citizens Headquarters

On Forrest Street. The beautifully maintained building is now the Capel Senior Citizens HQ. This building was erected in 1926 as the local Road Board Office. It later known as Scouts' Building and in the mid-1990's served as a children's playgroup centre. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL010

 

Capel - Veterinary Clinic

A little distance from the Senior Citizens, and still on the same side of the road, is the GeoVet veterinary clinic, as immaculately kept as its neighbour. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL011

 

Capel - Iluka Public Library

This is the Iluka Public Library. Iluka is the company involved in local mineral sands mining. Mining mineral sands in Capel goes back for decades. I can recall Ilmenite trucks rumbling down Spencer Street in Bunbury on their way to and from Capel and the port in the 1960's. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL012

 

Capel - Rustic Palace Bakery

This building gets my vote as the most attractive in Capel. It's on the main street and is 'The Rustic Palace' bakery and coffee shop. Lovely paint job, wrought-iron lace-work and tin roof. This building was erected in 1920 and has formerly been Solomon's Barber Shop and a Billiard Saloon. It's been a bakery since the 1950's. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL013

 

Capel - Capelberry

Here is another really attractive building on Forrest Street. It is Capelberry Cafe and Delicatessen which also provides catering. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL014

 

Capel - RSL Hall

Towards the top end of the Forrest Street is the local RSL Hall. This was constructed in 1957. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL015

 

Capel - Country Club

The Capel Country Club looks rather more modern than many of the other buildings in town (apart from the library). Nice setting on the eastern extremity of town. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL016

 

Capel - Railway Area

Here is what is left of either the railway station or simply a rail loading ramp. The railway line used to run through here from Boyanup to Busselton. The old Capel railway station building is now in Forrest Park in Bunbury. The line looks pretty intact though unused. The line from just beyond here through to Busselton has been lifted. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL017

 

Capel - Railway Station

The Capel railway station building was in situ in Capel until at least 1983. Sometime shortly after that it was picked up and taken to Forrest Park in Bunbury where it now sits besides this miniature railway. The little brick section to the right was not part of the original station building. April 2013. Photos Ref: CAPL018

 

Capel - St Joseph's Catholic Church

St Joseph's Catholic Church in Capel was constructed in 1913. The building was substantially renovated in 1993. February 2011. Photos Ref: CAPL019


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