Extension of Lorne's popular Tramway Track
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The existing track has been extended to make it easier to access.
Works to extend Lorne's historic Tramway Track to create a new terminus near Point Grey has been completed. The new terminus has been designed to make the track easier for visitors to find and to follow from the Lorne Pier precinct to St George River. Previously, the track started from Hird Street.
The recent works included relocating the timber trolley - an authentic relic of the tramway era - to a more prominent site that provides a eye-catching 'hook' to attract people to the track. The extended track provides a better link with Lorne's network of walking tracks around the town, allowing visitors and locals to enjoy a range of walking experiences.
The track approximates the original tramway route that operated between the Lorne Pier and St George River between 1904 and the 1930s. Teams of horses hauled iron-wheeled trolleys, loaded with milled timber source from the Otways, along a narrow track of wooden rails supported by sleepers. At the tramline terminus at the pier, the timber was loaded onto ships and the empty trolleys hauled back to the St George River mill.
There were many such tramlines in the Otways but they ceased operating in the 1930s as road and rail transport took over.
When the Great Ocean Road was constructed, sections of the original tramway track were lost due to the cutting into the cliff walls. However, other sections higher up the hill remained. Over time, the track was overgrown and largely forgotten.
In early 2006, representatives of the Friends of Queens Park and GORCC discovered remaining sections of the track, which the Lorne Historical Society identified as the old tramway track. In 2007, a joint project between GORCC and Friends of Queens Park, saw the track restored as a walking track with the route following sections of the original tramway.
The track commences at St George River and connects with a lower section of the old Zig Zag track. It then follows the original tramway route through the lower sections of Queens Park to the old Slaughterhouse site, and on to Point Grey and the Lorne Pier. Alternatively, one can start at the Point Grey end and finish at St George River
The track is approximately 1.4km long and offers fantastic views of St George River and the ocean. Interpretive signs have been installed to tell the story of the historic tramway track.