Bannockburn is located 93 km south-west of Melbourne via Geelong and the Midland Highway. The town, presumably named after the famous battle site in Scotland, came into existence in the 1850s when gold was being brought by coach from the fields in Ballarat to the port at Geelong.
The town developed around the Somerset Hotel. By 1860 a lock up had been established in the town. This was used for the double purpose of a gaol and a overnight 'bank vault' for the gold.
The railway arrived in 1863 and the town was moved (away from the Somerset Hotel) to meet the needs of the railway workers and the added business it brought to the town.
Today it is a tiny settlement overwhelmed by the proximity of both Geelong and Ballarat.
Things to see
Now a private residence this was once the Somerset Hotel. It was built in 1854 and can still be seen on the western side of the town. It stands beside Bruces Creek.
Bannockburn Railway Station
This substantial two-storey railway station was completed in 1863 to cater for the arrival of the railway line. The attractive bluestone was quarried at Lethbridge. There was obviously a standard design for railway stations at the time as the station is identical the those in Meredith, Lethbridge and Moorabool.
Located 5 km north of the town on the Moorabool River this bridge is named after George Russell who settled in the area in 1837. There is a pleasant picnic located beside the river.
Located on the Midland Highway at Bannockburn this 16 hectare vineyard was established by Stuart Hooper in 1974. The grapes grown are cabernet, pinot, chardonnay, rhine riesling, sauvignon blanc and shiraz. For more details (03) 5281 1363.
For tourism information, see Bannockburn website.