A small wheatbelt town east of Merriedin. It is situated on the Eastern Railway and is a stop on The Prospector rural railway service.

Rabbit Proof Fence

Conceived around the turn of the 20th century in an attempt to prevent rabbits entering the agricultural areas of the State. When finished it stretched 1,827 kms from near Hopetoun in the south to Cape Kenaudren, north of Port Hedland. Work commenced at Burracoppin in 1902 and that town was a major depot for the boundary riders employed to maintain the fence.

A fence west of Fence No 1 was constructed later and its line is crossed just east of Cunderdin on Highway 1. No 3 fence was later built out of Geraldton to meet No 2 fence and deter emus from invading the agricultural areas. By 1907 the three fences were looked after by a staff of 35, all based in Burracoppin. Twenty five of these were fence runners.

Burracoppins' AFL Connection

Burracoppin has an interesting connection to the Australian Football League (AFL) number one draft pick. In 1990 Geelong used the top pick to snare Burracoppin boy Stephen Hooper who was by then making a name for himself at East Perth. Then in 1996 West Coast got hold of the number one pick (and Michael Gardiner) by trading Ian Downsborough to new team Port Adelaide. Downsborough, who was off to Adelaide the next year, remains arguably Burra's most significant footy figure and has coached the Cats in the Eastern Districts Football League in recent years. His brother Craig was also a good player, representing Claremont in the WAFL. However there is a current AFL player, chosen as a rookie, who might just take the Burra cake. Carlton's Jeffery Garlett was born in Burracoppin, left at an early age but returned to play senior footy before graduating through the WAFL to the AFL. Garlett is part of an amazing footy family. He is a cousin of Buddy Franklin, Dale Kickett, Des Headland and Cruize Garlett and nephew of Derek Kickett and Leon Davis.

Photo and text by Les Everett

Burracoppin Rock

Situated 2km south of Burracoppin and is a popular picnic area. In the lee of the large rock are the remains of an old house. Burracoppin takes its name from Burracoppin Rock, the name of which was first recorded in 1864 as Burancooping Rock.

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Where is it?

283 km east of Perth; 25 km east of Merredin. Burracoppin is situated on the Eastern Railway and is a stop on the Prospector rural railway service.

About Burracoppin

The town was gazetted in 1891. It takes its name from Burracoppin Rock, a nearby granite rock, the name of which was first recorded in 1864 as Burancooping Rock. It was also shown as Lansdowne Hill in 1836. It is an Aboriginal name said to mean "near a big hill".

Burracoppin is where the first Rabbit Proof Fence (No. 1) was started in 1901, with construction heading south to Esperance and north towards Port Hedland. Burracoppin was the main depot for the Rabbit Proof Fence. All gates through the fence and wells for the fence runners (those who look after the fence) were numbered from this town. Parts of the original fence are still viewable in Burracoppin along with some of the original gates.

In 1932 the Wheat Pool of Western Australia announced that the town would have two grain elevators, each fitted with an engine, installed at the Burracoppin railway siding. The first was installed the following year and was able to handle 1,800 bags of wheat per day.

Granite Loop Trail

A drive through the Eastern Wheatbelt and Central Agricultural regions of Western Australia, visiting the many picturesque granite outcrops in these area. Experience the striking beauty of massive granite outcrops that rise out of the landscape where an abundance of natural vegetation is waiting to be discovered. Wandoo, Salmon Gum, dense Honeymyrtles and Tea tree Thickets give way to flowering Granite Kunzea with their gnarled shapes.


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