Durbanville was founded in the early 19th century around a fresh water spring, serving as a watering station for people travelling between Cape Town and the interior.
In 1825, a group of local farmers requested permission from Lord Charles Somerset (governor of the Cape Colony at that time) to build their own church. A small village grew around the church and the outspan (overnight stop).
During 1836, the inhabitants of Pampoenkraal petitioned the Governor of the Cape Colony, Sir Benjamin d’Urban, for permission to rename the village D’Urban in his honour. Permission was duly granted and the new name persisted until 1886 when it was renamed to Durbanville. A village management board was established in 1897 and a municipality in 1901.
The first mayor elected was John King. The village grew rapidly after the turn of 19th century and a local wagon industry developed. The King Brothers Wagon Works used to be South Africa’s biggest wagon works. At the turn of the century, it employed more than 200 men, which just about accounted for the entire village.
Today, Durbanville combines a village feel with strong growth in various industry sectors, including financial services, health and medical, hospitality, property, retail and services.