Lorne, Victoria

From Academic Kids

Lorne is a seaside town on Louttit Bay in Victoria, Australia. It is situated about the Erskine River and is a popular destination on the Great Ocean Road tourist route.

History

Prior to European settlement, the area was occupied by the Kolakngat Aborigines. Lorne is situated on a bay named after Captain Louttit, who sought shelter there in 1841 while supervising the retrieval of cargo from a nearby shipwreck. The coast was surveyed five years later in 1846. The first European settler was William Lindsay, a timber-cutter who began felling the area in 1849. The first telegraph arrived in 1859. Subdivision began in 1869 and in 1871 the town was named after the Marquis of Lorne from Argyleshire in Scotland on the occasion of his marriage to one of Queen Victoria's daughters.

In 1891 the area was visited by Rudyard Kipling who was inspired to write the poem Flowers, which included the line "Buy my hot-wood clematis,/ Buy a frond of fern,/ Gathered where the Erskine leaps/ Down the road to Lorne."

By 1922 the Great Ocean Road was extended to Lorne, making the town much more accessible. The first passenger service to Geelong was established in 1924 and guesthouses began to appear after 1930. The local fishing industry expanded significantly in the 1930s and 1940s. The Ash Wednesday bushfires swept through the area in 1983, destroying 76 houses.

Today Lorne has a population under 3000 and is in the Surf Coast Shire local government area.

Tourism

Popular local activities include traditional beach pursuits such as family bathing and surfing, as well as pier fishing for barracuda, whiting (fish), and trevally. Teddy's Lookout lies at the end of George St. and the town's southern outskirts and offers fine views over the town, coastline, and Great Ocean Road. The 22000 ha Angahook-Lorne State Park is nearby.

The town's population swells to around 13,000 each New Year's Eve when the Falls Festival takes place. The Mountain to Surf Swim is held on the first Friday evening in January and several thousand swimmers participate in the Pier to Pub Swim on the following day. The Great Otway Classic Foot Race on the Queen's Birthday terminates at Lorne. Fair on the Foreshore occurs on the first weekend in November.

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