After the opening of the rail link between Melbourne and the growing township of Geelong (population 23,352) in 1857, tenders were taken and in 1858 construction began on the Geelong-Ballarat railway line. The chosen route branching off the Melbourne-Geelong line at North Geelong did not cross the Barwon River as at least one proponent had suggested, instead, it crossed the Moorabool River by means of the the Moorabool Viaduct located about 1.5km west of the Geelong-Ballan Road.
|The Moorabool Viaduct 1863|
The 86km of line from Geelong to Ballarat was built to the highest engineering standards of the day and in addition to the viaduct, included a number of bridges crossing roads and creeks.
|Rail bridge near Moorabool station|
|Double-arched bluestone bridge carrying the Geelong-Ballarat rail line across|
Cowies Creek and Bluestone Bridge Road at Lovely Banks
|Lower Camp Bridge, outside Lethbridge|
The bridge was known to locals as Lower Camp Bridge, presumably after the men who built it. Rivalry between the two camps was strong, both on the sporting field of a Sunday afternoon and in their bridge-building prowess. Attention to detail can be seen in the finish of the stonework on the bridges near Lethbridge. Perhaps I'm biased, but the detail of the Lower Camp Bridge does seem somewhat greater.
|Road bridge on Quarry Road, Lethbridge|
|Remaining chimney at the quarry from which stone was cut for the|
Geelong-Ballarat railway line (later Nash's Quarry)
|Rail bridge over O'Connor Road, Lethbridge|
|Bridge over Bruce's Creek on Russell Street, Lethbridge|
|Moorabool Station April, 2012|
|Bannockburn Station April, 2012|
|Lethbridge Station April, 2012|
|Meredith Station April, 2012|