Laingsburg, Western Cape


Laingsburg is a town in the municipality of Laingsburg, District Central Karoo, Western Cape Province in South Africa. It is located in the Karoo, on the road N1, halfway between Cape Town and Beaufort West. The population is 5,667 (as of 2011 ). Neighboring towns are Matjiesfontein (27 kilometers ), Touwsrivier ( 82 km ), Beaufort West ( 198 km ) and Ladismith (85 km).


In 1862 Stephen Greeff acquired the farm Zoute Vlakte ( German: " Salty levels "). Today from here takes place the water supply of the city. The farm offered shade and fresh drinking water. He soon became a popular resting place. Greeff 1879 presented the request to be able to use a portion of this farm for the construction of a village. This was approved by John Laing, the competent officer of the British Crown.

For a short time during the construction of the village had the same name as the farm. Later, the name was changed to Buffels River and, as the place was connected to a railway line, the name was changed to Nassau, to avoid confusion with the homonymous town in the Eastern Cape in East London. Then the name was changed to honor John Laing. For a while the city Laing's Town was called, but since the local slang " Town" as the Afrikaanswort was pronounced for " toe ", there was increased jokes about the city and its inhabitants. Quick, the name was then changed to the present Laingsburg.

Around 100 years after the founding of Laingsburg was devastated on January 25, 1981 by a flood of the Buffels River. Within hours, the city was under water, and the inhabitants had to fight for their lives. Only 21 houses were undamaged and 104 residents lost their lives.