- Details: DS Meekatharra
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MEEKATHARRA is a town in the Mid West region of Western Australia. In aboriginal the name means ‘place of little water’. At the 2016 census, Meekatharra had a population of 708, with 34.0% being of Aboriginal descent. Meekatharra is a major supply centre for the pastoral and mining area in the Murchison region of Western Australia. It is located 764 km north-east of Perth and may be reached by the Great Northern Highway. It is a centre for sheep and cattle transshipment, initially by rail but now by road trains. It is also a regional home to the Royal Flying Doctor Service and the School of the Air. It is connected by public transport to Geraldton with connections to Perth via Transwa coach service N4. No viable horticultural industry exists in the area, although extensive but poor cattle stations in the Murchison and Gascoyne exist.
Meekatharra underwent a significant gold rush during the mining boom of the 1980s, with mining continuing until May 2004 at St Barbara Mines’s Bluebird Gold Mine. Exploration restarted in the area and St Barbara sold out to a company known as Mercator Gold in October 2005. Mercator Gold then conducted an extensive drilling programme and re-opened the mill, commencing production in early October 2007. This mining phase however was short lived, with Mercator going into administration in October 2008 and closing the mine.