Museum Collection

​Collections are the heart of the Bunbury Museum and Heritage Centre. A formal collection began in 2014 when the City of Bunbury Council confirmed the museum would focus on the history of the Bunbury area. Now hundreds of donors, mostly Bunbury residents, have offered objects which together combine to make fascinating and heartwarming stories.

Age is not one of the criteria; the significance of an object to the story of Bunbury is far more important.

Land and Environment:

  • Environmental context and change
  • Indigenous communities
  • Explorers and early settlers, including whaling and shipwrecks

Developing Bunbury:

  • Agriculture and rural history
  • Growth of Bunbury
  • Local business and industry, including port, maritime, rail, jetty and road
  • Secondary industries, including retail, mining, post office, newspapers, tourism, manufacturing, hospitality.
  • Governance and authority including police and prisons

Community:

  • Domestic life including arts and culture, health and hospitals, family life, recreation, sport and holidays, retail and shopping, school, education and religion
  • War Service from the Boer War to Afghanistan
  • Migration including Group Settlers post World War 2 and refugees
  • Significant people, social groups and businesses
  • Contemporary events and subjects           

The City of Bunbury authorised a Collection Policy in 2014. Since then the Bunbury Museum and Heritage Centre team has collected thousands of items, ranging from digital images to large and heavy objects such as the drive-in cinema projector, rowing 4, and pulpit. Each has a story to tell, relevant to the Bunbury community.

Displays are frequently changed as new artefacts are donated to keep the exhibitions fresh. Some objects are stand alone “heroes” in the collection, such as the film projector from the Mayfair drive-in cinema. This huge projector, on its cast iron stand, reminds Bunbury audiences of the days of “come as you are in the family car”, when dozens of cars lined up in front of a giant screen to enjoy the latest movies.

All collection objects are carefully assessed for their space, light, temperature and humidity requirements.

If you have an object you would like to donate, or an image or document which could be digitised, please contact the museum team on 08 9792 7286 or museum@bunbury.wa.gov.au