Waurn Ponds cement siding

Line: Geelong and Warrnambool
Distance from Melbourne: 88.271 km
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Opened: March 22, 1963

The cement works at Waurn Ponds opened in 1964 by the Victorian Portland Cement Coy, and is now operated by Blue Circle Southern Cement. The works and sidings are located on the south side of the railway line. The accompanying limestone quarry is located on the northern side, with a conveyor crossing the line. The plant has a large silo complex located above a number of loop sidings branching from the main Geelong - Warrnambool line.

The sidings at Waurn Ponds were brought into service on March 22, 1963 with the points being secured by staff locks, and an Intermediate Electric Staff instrument was provided in the South Geelong - Moriac section.

On Friday 10th April 1964 a special train ran to the plant for the official opening, hauled by B63, with four AS carriages, dining car Avoca, and two CE brake vans. Initial freight traffic to the plant consisted of outbound cement, and from 1978 inbound gypsum railed from Nowingi and Cowangie.

In 1984 a 2 position automatic signal with key switch override was provided at the up side of the Reservoir Road level crossing. Provided at the same time as the flashing lights, it prevents the crossing from operating when shunting the siding. The siding also had Annett locks in place of the staff locks previously provided. The number of sidings at the plant were rationalised from the initial layout sometime after 1985, with the down end siding lead being baulked in 2009.

The cement plant itself is more advanced than that located at Fyansford, allowing the company to continue operating in a more competitive marketplace.

In later years cement was the only rail traffic, with hopper wagons brought to the plant daily from North Geelong. The main destinations for the traffic is a cement mixing plant located at Lyndhurst in Melbourne's outer east, another mixing plant at Somerton in Melbourne's north, and a smaller volume to Mildura.

Rail haulage of cement from Waurn Ponds to Lyndhurst was discontinued in April 2009 due to Pacific National increasing freight charges. Rail traffic to Mildura and Somerton ended in December 2015, with trucks taking over.

In 2013 quarrying of limestone and clinker manufacturing ceased at the plant, with grinding of imported clinker due to be relocated to a new facility at the Port of Geelong towards the end of 2020.


March 22, 1963 Opened
Line Opened
November 25, 1876 Line opened Geelong to Winchelsea



NOTE: Diagrams are not to scale.

 Waurn Ponds cement siding on opening



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