Coronavirus (COVID-19) Health Alert
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Health Alert

If you are concerned about Coronavirus go to the Australian Government Department of Health website for the latest medical advice and official reports by clicking here

COVID-Safe Plan - Community and Businesses

Community Services and Businesses that were previously directed to close and now reopened must complete a COVID-Safe Plan before they can reopen.

This Plan will outline how your staff and patrons can be kept safe from COVID-19. The plan must be completed and made available at your business premises. If your business was allowed to reopen during Step 1 of South Australia’s Roadmap to Recovery, you must complete a Plan before 1 June.

If your committee or group has not completed the COVID-Safe Plan, or does not have the plan available at your premises when requested, you can be fined up to $5000 on the sport for non-compliance, or face prosecution.

Please find the link to the COVID-19-Safe Plan Form here -

For more information, please contact the SA COVID-19 Information line - 1800 253 787 offers local information and advice on general COVID-19 information for South Australians. Operates from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm every day.

Council services

Effective 30 March 2020, the District Council of Franklin Harbour has updated a range of measures to its operations. These measures are in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure the health and safety of its staff and the community, while providing the continuity of essential services.

Details of this are set out below:

Council Office

For the safety of staff and the community all enquiries are encouraged to be directed to staff via phone or email, if you wish to contact the Council Office please call 08 8629 2019 or email

Playgrounds, parks and reserves

As of 4 May playgrounds and skate parks are open, we remind users of these facilities that social distancing practices must be adhered to.

Visitor Information Centre, Craft Shop and Historical Museum

The Visitor Information Centre and Craft Shop are all closed until further notice.

Visitor Information can be located at

Public Toilets & Showers

All public toilets and showers are open.

Refuse Site

The refuse site remains open and can be accessed by the general public at the normal opening times, please ensure social distancing is undertaken at all times whilst attending this site.

This information will continue to be updated, last updated 10.30 am 2 June 2020.

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Franklin Harbour district is one of the older established areas on Eyre Peninsula. This area was first seen by Captain Matthew Flinders in the "Investigator" in 1802, when he reported a large lagoon (Franklin Harbour) visible from the mast-head, and gave the name Elbow Hill to a point in the coastal range. In 1840, Governor Gawler visited the area from Port Lincoln, and named Franklin Harbour after a midshipman on Flinders' vessel - John (later Sir John) Franklin. The name of Cowell was applied to the township in 1880 by Governor Jervois, after Sir John Cowell, a brilliant English Army Engineer.

The first settlers in the area were Dr James McKechnie and his brothers Donald and Peter, who came from Scotland in 1853 and took up their "run" which became known as Wangaraleednie Station. The name is considered to be an anglicised version of an Aboriginal word meaning "hill of the west wind". The original pine and pug home is now a ruin, but the present homestead dates from 1879. The old Middlecamp outstation nearer to Cowell is classified "B" by the National Trust.

Franklin Harbour is virtually a land locked harbour, with a narrow entrance about 300 meters wide through which vessels have entry. The entrance is like a fast flowing river when the tide is running. In the early part of this century, and until the advent of reliable motor transport, it was an important shipping port and it was a common sight to see three coastal vessels tied to the jetty several times a week.

Today the town of Cowell is the service centre for the surrounding rural areas, and for the professional fishers and aquaculture farmers who make their living from the harbour and gulf waters.

Further historic information can be found in the following books:
"Saga of Wangaraleednie" by Frank Masters
"Franklin Harbour District Council 1888 - 1988"
Both of these books are available for sale at the Council Office, phone 8629 2019.