Bredasdorp is a small Overberg town located in the
Western Cape Province in South Africa.
Bredasdorp, economic capital of the Cape Agulhas Region,
was established around a Dutch Reformed Church in 1838 and
is still strongly founded in its agricultural roots. The
town was named after Cape Town's first major, Michiel van
Breda, also known as the father of South Africa’s
merino sheep industry. Van Breda and Pieter Voltelyn van
der Byl, could not agree where the church should be built.
As a result two churches were built, and two towns, Bredasdorp
and Napier, were established.
This town with its population of 22 000 is the centre of
the Region’s wheat producing area; Bredasdorp serves
largely the local agricultural community. Besides sheep
farming, the town also boasts other agricultural activities,
including wheat, canola, milk, and indigenous fynbos cultivation.
The town is also the location of the offices of Kapula Candles,
an international candle company that exports hand-painted
candles to Europe and the United States. The population
of the town got a boost during the middle 1980's with the
establishment of both the Test Flight & Development
Centre (South African Air Force) as well as the Overbreg
Test Range (Denel) near the small coastal village of Arniston.
Development in the town is very rapid, with a number of
prominent South African business franchises opening their
doors during 2009 and 2010.
Surrounding towns in the Overberg region
Bredasdorp is the
first town in South Africa which received the suffix of
dorp, Afrikaans for "small town".
The Overberg District
Council's Head Office is located in Bredasdorp.
The Foot of Africa
Marathon is (in)famous for being the toughest marathon
in South Africa. The event takes place every year in early
October and the town turns into a busy hive of activity.
The town has an
excellent museum dedicated to the shipwreck of the Arnison,
which is well worth a visit.
The Merino Statue,
located at the entrance to the Bredasdorp/Napier Co-operative,
was erected in honour of the merino sheep which brought
fame to this area, due to careful breeding by Michiel
van Breda on his historic farm, Zoetendals Vallei, early
in the 1900s.
Room: Furnished in honour of Audrey Blignault who was
born in Bredasdorp and who enjoys national recognition
as a writer.
The Test Flight
and Development Centre SAAF and the Overberg Test Range
are situated close to town (approx. 20km).