Old country home near Warrenbayne, Victoria.
The Basin has many small towns with populations ranging from 1,000 to 10,000 people. These small towns mostly function as rural service centres, meeting the needs of the surrounding farming areas and sometimes undertaking some processing of agricultural commodities. Country towns in the Basin include (there are too many to list here) Bourke, Renmark, Forbes, Cooma, Roma, Benalla, St George, Cowra, Balranald, Cunnamulla, Swan Hill, Leeton, Seymour, Deniliquin, Goondiwindi and Cobar.
Towns with populations ranging from 10,000 to 20,000 people are regarded as small urban centres; these include Echuca-Moama, Griffith, Moree, Murray Bridge, Horsham, Wangaratta, Warwick and Murray Bridge.
Paddlesteamers on the Murray river at the Port of Echuca Victoria. Photo by Brayden Dykes
Many small urban centres in the Basin are rich in heritage and played key roles in early European settlement. For example, Horsham dates from the 1840s and was the unofficial capital of the Victorian Wimmera and the major service centre for the surrounding important arable and grazing area. Horsham now has agricultural research and education facilities and clothing and light engineering industries.
Located on the banks of the upper Condamine River in the Granite Belt of south-east Queensland, Warwick is the main service centre for a farming area that produces diverse crop and livestock products, some of which are processed in the town. The area is also noted for its gemstones and minerals.
A small number of towns have larger populations, some of which may range to around 25,000 people, such as Broken Hill.
Large urban centres have populations exceeding 25,000 people. This category includes all the Basin's major urban centres including Dubbo, Wagga Wagga, Bendigo, Wodonga, Albury, Queanbeyan, Shepparton, Orange, Bathurst, Mildura, Tamworth and Toowoomba.
05 January 2015