Rustenburg is one of the host cities selected to host football games in the 2010 FIFA World Cup (which starts on the 11th of June this year). The Royal Bafokeng stadium is the venue for matches in the tournament. The city is situated about 100km from Pretoria at the foot of the Magaliesberg mountain range in the North West Province of South Africa.
It’s probably one of the cities that I’ve visited the most in my life. Many friends of mine went to school in Rustenburg and hail from the surrounding areas. For this reason this city has been selected as one of my 10 facts topics on this blog.
Here are 10 Interesting Facts about Rustenburg
1. Rustenburg was established in 1851 to serve as an administrative center for a nearby fertile farming area producing citrus fruit, tobacco, peanuts, sunflower seeds, maize, wheat and cattle.
2. It was the 3rd oldest town in the former Transvaal province in South Africa.
3. The German community (Kroondal) near the down dates back to 1857.
4. Former South African republic (Zuid-Afrikaanse Republiek) president Paul Kruger bought a farm outside the town in 1863. The homestead on his farm called ‘Boekenhoutfontein” is now the Paul Kruger Country Museum.
5. The area around the town was a battlefield in the Anglo Boer War (1899-1902).
6. It’s the fastest growing city in South Africa with a population of +/- 400,000.
7. Besides the Royal Bafokeng Stadium Rustenburg is also the home of Olympia Park multi-purpose stadium which hosted matches in the 1995 IRB Rugby World Cup in South Africa.
8. Rustenburg is home to the 2 largest platinum mines in the world and the world’s largest platinum refinery, PMR (Precious Metal Refiners), which processes around 70% of the world’s platinum.
9. Among the first residents were settlers of Indian origin. One of the first families of Indian origin was the Bhyat family, whose contribution to the City’s history has been marked by the renaming of a major streetname to “Fatima Bhayat Street”. She arrived with her husband in the town in 1877.
10. Johan Botha (South African opera singer), Pik Botha (former South African minister of foreign affairs), Koos du Plessis (Afrikaans singer-songwriter), Frik du Preez (former Springbok rugby player), Esta Terblanche (South African soap opera actress) and Andre Stander (notorious bank robber depicted by Thomas Jane in the film Stander were all born here.
Well, there you have it, 10 facts you might not have known about Rustenburg. If you learned something today, feel free to share this post with your friends.
Watch this space for updates in the Facts category on Running Wolf’s Rant.