Laanecoorie is a rural village on the Loddon river 35 km south-west of Bendigo. It is immediately north of the Laanecoorie Reservoir, which was the site of an extensive series of lakes or waterholes which the Aborigines named Languycorrie.
Laanecoorie lay on a crossing place between the Bendigo district and several towns in the western mining areas. It also had extensive land suitable for grazing and agriculture. An Anglican school was opened in 1862. Ten years later a bridge was built to replace a punt at the crossing, and a local landowner built the Laanecoorie Bridge Hotel to dissuade his employees from going to Tarnagulla for alcoholic refreshment or sprees. A Methodist church had been built in 1869, and the crossing place became a small township.
In 1890 a mechanics’ institute was opened and the construction of a weir across the Loddon River was completed. The Laanecoorie Reservoir, has a capacity of 17,000 mega litres. Laanecoorie was described in 1903 in the Australian handbook:
Heavy rainfall in 1909 caused the collapse of the weir wall and the destruction of the bridge. Larger, stronger structures replaced them. The reinforced concrete bridge was designed by Sir John Monash.
Laanecoorie has an Anglican church, a hall and a caravan park beside the reservoir. The school was closed in 1993. In 2014 designs for a foreshore redevelopment included an expanded camping area, walking trails, signage and riverbank improvements.
Laanecoorie’s census populations have been:
Ken Arnold and Edna Arnold, Tarnagulla and district: the way it was, 1992
Jennifer E. Cain, Laanecoorie, hub of the universe, the author, c1991