Hutt River Micro-Nation Hits the Market for the First Time in 50 Years
If you are looking to find a refuge from the blockages, you may be looking for an entire micro-nation.
Western Australia’s historic Hutt River Province (WA), which once operated as a sovereign micro-nation with its own stamps and coins, has come onto the market.
Located 40 km north of Northampton in northern Washington State, the property includes over 6,100 ha of farmland and a number of small huts.
Despite being located on 75 square kilometers of farmland (over 30 times the size of the country of Monaco), it housed only 30 people at its peak. The micro-nation claimed to be the same size as Hong Kong.
Micro-nations are entities claiming to be sovereign states, but are not legally recognized as independent. It’s different from a microstate like Vatican City in Italy, which is internationally recognized. However, the Hutt River is over 70 times the size of Vatican City.
It was first purchased in the 1960s when the WA government introduced wheat quotas.
“Prince” Leonard Casley and his French-born wife “Princess” Shirley attempted to separate from the claiming state in 1970. Although no government agency recognized this decision, Hutt River produced its own currency and its own stamps.
It was certainly not the last time Prince Leonard rebelled against government authorities. In 1977, he declared war on Australia.
Australia was suing the principality for unpaid taxes, according to CNN. After conferring with his own local government, they decided to declare war, rather than pay.
The war only lasts a few days.
It is not known if a second war was in sight, after the creation of the Royal Hutt River Defense Force in 1988.
The force included an army, a navy and a military college. The training programs were so impressive that affiliates of the United States Army adopted the techniques. At least that’s what the official Hutt River website suggests.
The state was “dissolved” last year amid the coronavirus pandemic, but was previously a thriving tourist destination.
Tourists to the area are expected to get an entry visa and receive a stamp on their passport, which costs around $ 2, according to CNN. The Hutt River dollar traded one by one against Australian dollars.
Visitors could tour the Principality’s Post Office, Souvenirs Department and Historical Society, a non-denominational chapel and the sacred educational shrine of Princess Shirley, established by the Real College of Advanced Research at Hutt River. There were also leisure activities, including a putt-putt class and tea room.
The centerpiece was the Royal Art Collection, which included documents, newspaper clippings and a giant bust of Prince Leonard, carved in rock by a Canadian artist.
Prince Leonard sadly passed away in 2019. Sadly, he left behind a multi-million dollar tax bill, which forced his son Prince Graeme Casley to sell the land.
While there is still a chance that an avid historian will buy the land, it is more likely to be sold in three separate lots for farming and farming.
The property, which is officially located at 2704 Ogilvie West Road, Yallabatharra, is for sale via Elders Real Estate WA Rural & Metro.
Seniors Agent Kris Teakle said Hutt River was feeling “euphoric”.
“A wise investor will have the choice of upgrading the current farmland and infrastructure to improve what is there now or renting out the settlement area for a number of commercial enterprises,” she said.
“The property’s location is a short drive from the Coral Coast and has stunning flora and fauna, not to mention the prized chestnuts that are found in the Hutt River itself.”